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The Stuart Warren Studentship Fund

The College is launching a fundraising drive in memory of Stuart Warren (1938-2020), one of our longstanding fellows in Chemistry who sadly died earlier this year. Alongside the Chemistry department we wish to provide an opportunity for an outstanding PhD student from sub-Saharan Africa to undertake research in chemistry at Churchill College.

Stuart was a leader in his field and passionate about his subject- he taught generations of Churchill chemistry undergraduates. He was a supervisor and mentor to outstanding academics including Professor Varinder Aggarwal FRS, Professor Jonathan Clayden and Professor Kelly Chibale. Now we, his colleagues at Churchill and the Cambridge University Department of Chemistry aim to honour Stuart’s memory to enable a student from the South African development area countries to come to study for a research degree in organic or physical chemistry at Cambridge.

The Stuart Warren PhD studentship would fully fund a student from Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Eswatini (formerly Swaziland), Zambia or Zimbabwe, which constitute the Southern African development region. This requires approximately £50,000 per year; £29,000 to cover the annual fee for an overseas PhD student, and £21,000 to cover living costs. We aim to raise at least £25,000 per year, or £100,000 over four years for one student to be fully funded, with matching funding from the Cambridge trust to make up the difference. We also have a matching offer of £10,000 from a foundation if we can raise £10,000 before 30 November 2020. Were this initial fundraising overreach its target, we could be even more ambitious: the endowment required to generate £25,000 annually is at least £625,000( based on a 4% drawdown), so if we could reach this higher target we could hope to endow the studentship in perpetuity.

If 100 former students pledge £25 per month for three years, we would very soon reach our target of £100,000. Should you have any questions about this fund, or donating, please don’t hesitate to contact Fran Malarée on

If you would like to make a contribution to the Stuart Warren fund please donate here.

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An obituary of Stuart is published here, by the Royal Society of Chemistry

One of Stuart’s former students, Professor Kelly Chibale, of the University of Cape Town says:

‘This opportunity is one that holds unquantifiable benefits for young Africans who are historically disadvantaged and under-represented in organic chemistry. Born and brought up in impoverished rural areas and townships of Zambia, I was given the rare opportunity through a scholarship to study at Cambridge. The high quality academic training I received from Stuart was the foundation for who I have become.’

Amongst many notable achievements, Kelly founded Africa’s first and only integrated drug discovery centre, H3D

With your help we aim to fund a future academic and broaden access to this University from an under-represented region. We hope this will also encourage others in African countries to consider degrees in sciences at all levels. We appreciate that there are huge obstacles to overcome for such students including a lack of teachers and resources for education in scientific fields. With your help we can commemorate one of our members who was a stellar teacher and researcher himself with a lasting legacy.

Thank you in advance for your support.

Churchill also has an outstanding track record in funding over 10 postgraduates from Southern African countries for Master’s degrees in the past forty years entirely through donations from its Fellows, students and alumni through its Southern African Bursary, now studentship fund. One of the former recipient, Professor Njabulo Ndebele (G73) became the Vice-Chancellor of the University of Cape Town, another, Oscar van Heerden (G06) is an economic advisor to the South African government. Postgraduate students are a vital part of Churchill College and have been since its foundation. With over 370 graduates from all over the world, Churchill’s graduate students are valued members of the College’s diverse and exciting academic community.

An alumna’s perspective

Thank you for providing a way to be able to help to keep the memory of Stuart Warren alive. A wonderful supervisor, lecturer and teacher. I was lucky enough to benefit from his wisdom and knowledge in my time at Churchill.

N Adams (U88)