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Margaret MacNamara Education Grants (MMEG)’s mission is to assist women from developing countries who are pursuing their education with the aim of improving the lives of women and children in their countries. Self-identifying women who are at least 25 years old, and enrolled in an eligible university as a certificate, undergrad, grad, or postdoc student are welcome to apply for the MMEG scholarships. Applicants are required to be officially enrolled in their university at the time of application and to provide proof of this enrollment. Part-time students (minimum of 2 courses per semester or term) may apply. In past years, grants of up to US$7,000 have been awarded.


Applicants must meet the following eligibility criteria:

  • Be a self-identifying woman, and at least 25 years old at time of application deadline;

  • Be a national of a country listed on the MMEG Country Eligibility List including Eswatini

  • Be enrolled (not just accepted) at an accredited academic institution when submitting application; and plan to be enrolled for a full academic term after award of the grant by the Board;

  • Not be related to a World Bank Group, International Monetary Fund, or Inter-American Development Bank staff member, spouse, retiree, or MMEG Board member;

This program accepts applications between May 15 and September 14 each year. Queries may be addressed to The results will be announced on our web page in mid-December.

In addition to the above criteria, an applicant must:

  • already be enrolled part-time (minimum of 2 courses per semester or term) or full-time at one of the eligible universities

  • be enrolled for at least one more academic term (the term between January and July 2023);

  • hold a study permit for South Africa if applying from an eligible country other than South Africa.

Estimated expenses should be calculated and expressed in Rand. Remember to read the Application Checklist and FAQs before applying and select "South Africa program” in the first question of the application. If the program name does not appear, the program may be closed to new applications.


  • Cape Peninsula Central University of Technology

  • Durban University of Technology

  • Fort Hare University

  • KwaZulu-Natal University

  • Limpopo University

  • Mangosuthu University of Technology

  • Nelson Mandela University

  • North-West University

  • Rhodes University

  • Sefako Makgatho Health Science University

  • Sol Plaatje University

  • Stellenbosch University

  • Tshwane University

  • University of Cape Town

  • University of Johannesburg

  • University of Mpumalanga

  • University of Pretoria

  • University of the Free State

  • University of the Western Cape

  • University of the Witwatersrand

  • University of Venda

  • University of Zululand

  • Vaal University of Technology

  • Walter Sisulu University


Before starting the MMEG application process, please scan the following documents in digital form (pdf preferred, jpeg or png):

  • Identification (ID) card with photo:

    • (a) national passport page with photo and date of birth, if studying outside your home country, or

    • (b) government/university-issued identity card with photo and birth date;

  • Most recent proof of official registration from university (not an acceptance letter);

  • Most recent official university transcripts and/or reports

  • Visa page or study permit page within current passport (if studying outside home country);

  • Second passport page with clear photo (in case of dual citizenship).

You will be asked to upload these documents at specific points in the on-line application form. You will also provide:

  • Brief paragraphs describing your personal story, and how your studies, experiences, and future plans are linked to your commitment to women and children in developing countries;

  • An estimate of your financial situation, including living expenses, for the coming academic year, and planned strategies to cover funding needs;

  • A summary of your thesis (if applicable), including its objective, methodology, and findings, and relationship to career goals.

Two reference letters are required. One referee must be a faculty member from your current university. The second referee may be a person (non-family member) who can vouch for your character. At least one of the individuals must have known you for the equivalent of at least two semesters.

Please contact two people from whom you would like to request a reference letter. After receiving their confirmation, you will be asked to provide in the application form: the email addresses of the two people providing references. They will each receive an email link from the Embark online platform to write their recommendation. When their recommendations are submitted, you will be notified by Embark.

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