The Scottish Government and Heriot-Watt University launch new scholarships for women in Zambia



Margaret Sakufiwa
Margaret Sakufiwa from Lusaka in Zambia graduated in June 2023 with an MBA from Heriot-Watt’s Edinburgh Business School through the first Scholarship for Women in Zambia programme.

The Scottish Government and Heriot-Watt's Edinburgh Business School are proud to expand their partnership by offering fully funded MBA scholarships for women in Zambia.   

The Gender Equality Initiative was launched at Heriot-Watt Dubai Climate Hub, coinciding with COP28 in the UAE. 

In collaboration with the Scottish Government’s International Development Fund, the initiative will provide 30 fully funded distance learning opportunities on the Edinburgh Business School’s Master of Business Administration (MBA) programme to commence in March 2024. 

The flexibility offered by these online scholarships allow students to combine study with work and home life in their own country.

Màiri McAllan, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Net Zero and Just Transition

This is the second time the University and Scottish Government have partnered to deliver a programme that opens doors to business education for Zambian women from all backgrounds. 

Commenting on the announcement, Màiri McAllan, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Net Zero and Just Transition said: “The Scottish Government is committed to playing its part as a good global citizen and helping to tackle the global challenges of poverty, injustice and inequality.

“Initiatives like this one illustrate what that means in practice. The flexibility offered by these online scholarships allow students to combine study with work and home life in their own country, and helps tackle gender inequality by breaking down some of the barriers women have in accessing learning and qualifications.  

“As a country that has long benefitted from the industrialisation that has driven the current climate crisis, it is only right that Scotland contributes its fair share to support countries that have been unequally impacted by its consequences, and ensure we can meet the aims of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals together.”

Welcoming the announcement, Principal and Vice-Chancellor of Heriot-Watt University, Professor Richard A. Williams, said: “Our mission at Edinburgh Business School and Heriot-Watt University is to help aspiring business professionals across the world transform their careers.  

“Our students and alumni develop professionally and personally throughout their learning experience, and we are delighted to partner, once again, with the Scottish Government and offer the scholarship to women in Zambia.  

“We very much look forward to welcoming the scholars to our community of students from around the world. We also hope that the selected individuals will support other women in business, providing guidance and mentorship to females who are still underrepresented across many industries at a senior management level and in boardrooms.” 

In Zambia, Mainga Kabika, Permanent Secretary, Office of the President, Gender Division, said:  "The Zambian Government is committed to enhancing opportunities for women, with over 800,000 more girls attending school since we delivered on our promise of free education in 2021.

“Zambia is on the right trajectory and we're actively increasing the numbers of women in leadership positions.  We believe that education is the best equalizer and the strongest force for empowering women.

“This scholarship provides additional opportunities for Zambian women to access world class tertiary education, through our partnership with Scotland. 

“Thirty Zambian women will now have the chance to study for a world-class MBA through Heriot Watt University thanks to today's announcement."

Applications are invited from women of Zambian nationality who are passionate about tackling gender inequality and who will use the knowledge and skills gained from their MBA studies to support women in their local communities. The initiative also welcomes applications from women who would not be able to fund their studies. The application deadline is 31 January 2024 and the programme starts in March 2024.