A Falk Egg first: alumni come together to fund an Opportunity Scholarship

A group of Falkner Eggington alumni have collectively raised money to fund an Opportunity Scholarship, which supports under-represented students throughout their time at Loughborough.

The Opportunity Scholarship programme supports students from low-income households and areas of low higher education participation, which may cause them to be at a disadvantage against other students. The programme was first introduced in 2012 and celebrates its 10th Anniversary this year; it has since seen 224 students receive scholarship funding across each year of their studies, with just under £2million received in donations to support the scheme. There are currently 129 Opportunity Scholars enrolled across the University.

Human Biology graduate Abigail Hampson was an Opportunity Scholar andthe Hall Chair of Falk Egg from 2020 to 2021.

She described the impact that the scholarship had on her university experience:

“I was desperate to attend Loughborough, but the financial burden of moving away from home with no extra financial support from my family (coming from a very low-income household) was terrifying to me. Receiving the Opportunity Scholarship gave me the reassurance that I could move out of home and come to Loughborough.

“This allowed me to run for the Falk Egg committee and contribute to hall life, eventually becoming Hall Chair. I also had the support of my scholarship donors throughout my three years and knew I was always working to make them proud, both through my studies and extra-curricular activities.

“The Falk Egg spirit is there from the off, and I am yet to experience anything like it. It is such a tight-knit community full of people from every walk of life that never take themselves too seriously. The fact we have such an incredible alumni base proves that the Falk Egg spirit never dies, and this scholarship enhances that further.”

Alex Laybourne, a member of the Alumni Advisory Board, heads up the group of Falk Egg alumni that funded the scholarship which will be given to an incoming applicant that has selected Falk Egg as their hall of residence.

We spoke to Alex about the bond of their group and how their philanthropic nature stemmed from the tight-knit Falk Egg community.

He said:

"Falk-Egg and Loughborough gave us all so many great memories and life-long friendships, and we are delighted to be able to offer this scholarship to allow someone else to get access to the opportunities we all had.

“It is testament to the hall spirit fostered when we were there, that as a group of alumni we are all still engaged with the hall, as well as each other, and I must thank all of those contributing for making it possible.

“We have always been engaged in raising money for various causes, including The £10K Challenge during lockdown last March, and we hope that this may be the start of a growing scholarship pot to offer more opportunities to more people."

We are very grateful to the group for their generosity and continuing support of the University.