The College is delighted to announce the next round of ISLA Award Cambridge at Churchill College winners! A total of eight awards were made. The winners each received a financial award as well as optional access to mentoring and careers advice from experienced alumni.
The ISLA Award initiative is designed to support and encourage current and future Churchill students of Black Caribbean and/or Black African descent. You can find out more about some of the latest award winners below. They were each asked to give their reaction to winning one of the awards as well as their thoughts on Churchill College and their hopes and plans for the future.
Meet ISLA Award winner Chimdi Okonkwo (U22 Law)
It is an absolute honour to have been chosen to receive the ISLA award. The ISLA award is an incredible way of recognising the achievements, both academic and non-academic, of black students. This initiative is especially wonderful as it supports and encourages black students who remain underrepresented in our community. It is admirable that the college is willing to alleviate some of the obstacles and challenges that black students face. I believe this award will be an amazing way of encouraging diversity and inclusion at Churchill.
I am studying law which can be a very intense course. Because of this, I appreciate how informal and relaxed the environment in Churchill is as it serves as a break from the fast-paced nature of my course. I also love how friendly everyone at Churchill is and how people are willing to brighten up your day with a smile.
Meet ISLA Award winner Lily Archer (U21 MML)
I feel very grateful to have receive this award from college, as I believe it will help me to continue to participate in college life to the fullest.
I think this award is important, as it helps Black students feel welcomed and supported in the college community. It’s also an incentive for prospective applicants from Black backgrounds, thus combatting the underrepresentation of Black students, both at Churchill and Cambridge as a whole
Meet ISLA Award winner Osaremen Iluobe (U20 HSPS)
I’m delighted to win this prize and think it’s an amazing scheme that makes Churchill College additionally unique! I’ve thoroughly enjoyed my time at the College so far as the environment is supportive and relaxing, both of which are things that really matter given the academic nature of Cambridge life. I can’t recommend the College enough to students from diverse backgrounds as I’m sure that this is somewhere that anyone would feel instantly welcome which is so crucial when settling into life at the university more generally.
I’ve made some invaluable friendships during my time at the College and I’m grateful to the support network which I have within the College community, from friends to academic and non-academic staff. As for what lies ahead, I have been awarded with a prestigious scholarship to pursue my postgraduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania which is exciting!
The ISLA Award Cambridge at Churchill College
This project was originally crowdfunded in the summer of 2021 by over 50 donors including alumni, current students and friends of the College and friends and supporters of alumna Imani Jeffers (U15) who conceived the project. Five awards were made in 2021 and two more awards were made to offer-holders the following year. It’s not too late to support this initiative with a gift via the College’s online donation page by selecting ‘Other’ from the drop-down list of funds and noting ‘ISLA Gift’ in the comment box. Any additional support we can secure will help to build and strengthen the impact of this award.