Early Success for the Sutton Trust US Programme

• 38 British State School Students Accepted to Leading US Universities

• Bank of America Merrill Lynch named as Founding Corporate Partner

In the first wave of early applications, thirty-eight bright British students from low and middle-income homes have won places at leading US universities through the Sutton Trust US Programme, the US-UK Fulbright Commission and the Sutton Trust announced today. In addition, another student has been named as a finalist for a prestigious merit scholarship.

Compounding the success of the programme, it was also announced today that Bank of America Merrill Lynch has been named as the programme’s Founding Corporate Partner. Furthermore, the bank’s investment has been matched by Peter Baldwin and Lisbet Rausing who have supported the programme since its launch.

The aim of the UK-funded programme is to encourage academically talented, low and middle income British students to consider studying at American universities. The 2014-15 programme cohort comes from across the UK, and 70% of the students will be the first in their family to go to university.

175 students were selected for a summer school in the US at either Yale or Harvard Universities, or the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), spending a week last summer living on campus and visiting a number of other US campuses. They benefited from residential activities and received an intensive programme of support, delivered by the US-UK Fulbright Commission over a number of months before and after their US visit, which covered admission tests, college choices and the application process. 

The 38 students were selected under the early application deadline to US universities, and more students will be applying by the January deadlines with results available later this spring. (The biographies for all admitted students and scholarship finalist can be found online at: http://bit.ly/EarlyAdmissionsBios2014). 

These students have already been offered a total of approximately $8.5 million (£5.5 million) of financial aid from the universities over the next four years. They have been accepted to a range of leading institutions including: Amherst, Barnard, Bates, Brown, Carleton, Claremont McKenna, Columbia, Dartmouth, Duke, Harvard, Lafayette College, Middlebury, New York University Abu Dhabi, Northwestern, Princeton, Skidmore, Smith, St Olaf, Swarthmore, Trinity College, Union, University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania, University of Richmond, Vanderbilt, Wellesley and Yale. Included in the early successes are two participants who have received the Robertson Scholarship based at Duke or the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Additionally, one participant has been selected as a finalist for the Morehead-Cain Scholarship at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Of the 38 accepted students, about two-thirds of participants are from households that earn less than £25,000 a year, and about 70% will be the first in their family to go to university. 

Sir Peter Lampl, Chairman of the Sutton Trust, said: “I am delighted that 38 students from our 2014 US programme have already been offered places at top American universities. In just three years the scheme has grown from 64 students participating to 175 places being available this year. As today’s figures show, it’s not just increasing numbers of students being able to access the programme that we’re celebrating – it’s also increasing levels of success in gaining places at these elite universities.

It is wonderful to see students from low and middle income families getting the opportunity to enjoy the breadth and depth offered by US degree programmes, which have long been popular amongst those from private schools. The level of financial aid available to students on our programme means many will be able to graduate debt-free from some of the best universities in the world.

The new partnership we announced today with Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Lisbet Rausing and Peter Baldwin, puts the US programme in an excellent position to continue to thrive and expand in future years.”  

Penny Egan CBE, Executive Director of the US-UK Fulbright Commission, said: "We are thrilled by these early university admissions results. To have 38 of our applicants admitted in the early admissions round and for them to receive such generous financial aid offers, is a wonderful achievement and a testament to the high calibre of the programme participants. This programme means that an American university education is within the reach of very talented young people, who previously would not have had the tools to access this specialist support. We are hugely proud to be a partner with the Sutton Trust in this unique programme."

Alex Wilmot-Sitwell, President for Europe, the Middle East and Africa at Bank of America Merrill Lynch, said: “We are delighted to be involved in this project and I commend Sutton Trust for their work in helping to address the inequality that still exists for so many young people across the UK. For more than 15 years, Bank of America Merrill Lynch has been involved in helping drive youth employment through education; and it is through partnering on initiatives such as this that together, we’re able to give the next generation the confidence and the skills to prosper – and perhaps, even more importantly – the inspiration to succeed.”

Applications for this year’s programme close on 27 January 2015 and can be completed online: http://us.suttontrust.com

The US Programme is based on the Sutton Trust’s successful flagship programme in the UK, which now runs at ten leading British universities and has benefited over ten thousand state school students. Applications for the UK programme are also open now until 9 March 2015 at www.suttontrust.com.

For further information please contact Hilary Cornwell or Conor Ryan at the Sutton Trust on 020 7802 1660 or Jamie Dunn at the US-UK Fulbright Commission on 0207 498 4019. 


1. View the biographies of all of the Sutton Trust US Programme 2014 participants who were admitted in the early round of US admissions and scholarship finalist. (http://bit.ly/EarlyAdmissionsBios2014

2. The Sutton Trust is a foundation set up in 1997, dedicated to improving social mobility through education. It has published over 150 research studies and funded and evaluated programmes that have helped hundreds of thousands of young people of all ages, from early years through to access to the professions. For more information visit www.suttontrust.com

3. The US-UK Fulbright Commission is a not-for-profit organisation funded by both governments to promote educational exchange between the US and the UK. The Commission offers prestigious awards for postgraduate study and research in the US, as well as an Advisory Service and is the government recognised source of US study information in the UK. For more information visit www.fulbright.org.uk

4. Results from the 2012-13 and 2013-14 cohorts of students include 82 students enrolled at 42 different universities across 18 states and an American university abroad, accessing over $18 million in financial aid. 

5. The Sutton Trust has run UK summer schools since 1997. They offer young people from low and middle income backgrounds in year 12 – mostly 17 year-olds – a chance to get a taste of student life at a research-led university. The programme balances busy academic days with social activities and has been successful in encouraging bright state school students from low and middle income families to study at the most selective universities in Britain. The UK summer schools are supported by Barclays’ as part of their 5 Million Young Futures ambition, which seeks to improve the enterprise, employability and financial skills of five million young people aged 10 to 35, by 2015. The programme is also supported by The Wolfson Foundation, the Garfield Weston Foundation and Ian Hazelton.

6. In 2013-14, 5,054 UK students attended a US university for undergraduate study. Campus hosts Harvard, Yale and MIT are among some of the leading universities that offer generous financial aid to international students. A recent EducationUSA survey found that over 900 US universities offer international students scholarships of $10,000 or more. Of these 900 universities, 195 offer scholarships of $20,000-$30,000 per year, 80 offer scholarships between $30,000-$40,000 per year, 105 offer scholarships greater than $40,000 per year and 183 offer a “full ride”.

7. Developing solutions for social and economic challenges is at the core of Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s responsibility platform. In more than 90 countries around the world, they partner with employees, clients and stakeholders to help make financial lives better. The firm focuses on responsible business practices, environmental sustainability, advancing opportunity in local communities through education and employability programmes and investing in global leadership development. For more information visit www.bankofamerica.com/about and twitter.com/BofAML.

8. Sutton Trust US Programme 2014 Participants Admitted Early and Scholarship Finalist

Student Name

UK School


US University

Kyiah Ashton

Redcliffe Sixth Form


Wellesley College

Ellie Atkinson

Llantwit Major Comprehensive School


Yale University

Eleanor Bailey

Redcliffe Sixth Form


Barnard College

Rachel Bailey

St John Bosco Arts College


University of Chicago

Gugandeep Banga

Cranford Community College


New York University Abu Dhabi

Aarondeep Bargotta

The Coventry Blue Coat Church of England School and Music College


Princeton University

Saif Hassan Bhatti

Pimlico Academy


Northwestern University

Hannah Bradbury

Rushcliffe School (Nottinghamshire)


Middlebury College

Connor Bridges

Robert Clack School (Barking and Dagenham)


Princeton University

Ricky Brown

Greenford High School


University of Richmond

Jordan Clark

South Nottinghamshire Academy


Northwestern University

Samuel Cordner

Notre Dame High School, Norwich (Norfolk)


Columbia University

Lucy Davies-Kumadiro

Wyggeston and Queen Elizabeth I College (Leicester)


Vanderbilt University

Alice Donnellan

Torquay Boys' Grammar School (Torbay)


Harvard College

Antonio Exposito

Our Lady's High School Cumbernauld


Lafayette College

Patrick Frenett

Waingels College (Wokingham)


Amherst College

Aimee Hall

Wednesfield High School, A Specialist Engineering College


Skidmore College

Jack Hardwick

Greenhead College (Kirklees)


Carleton College

Amy Hudson

Blessed Hugh Faringdon Catholic School


Princeton University

Joshua Hunt

Franklin College (North East Lincolnshire)


Bates College

Jardelle Johnson

King Edward VI Handsworth School


Brown University

Jonathan Kimber

Bournemouth School


Union College

Chantelle Leswell

Beath High School


Smith College

Marianne Lotter-Jones

Brockenhurst College (Hampshire)

New Milton

Swarthmore College

Carnun Marcus-Page

Woodhouse College (Barnet)


Dartmouth College

Kirsty McLaren

Birkenhead Sixth Form College


St Olaf College

Lisa Mcmillan

Cathkin High School


Smith College

Ben Mellor

Scarborough Sixth Form College (North Yorkshire)


Trinity College

Georgia Murray

Eckington School (Derbyshire)


Vanderbilt University

Rachael Murtagh

Lord Wandsworth College


(Robertson Scholarship Recipient) Duke University

Ruby Newsham

Ullapool High School


Trinity College

Alex Norman

The Sixth Form College Farnborough (Hampshire)


University of Pennsylvania

Phillippa Owens

Runshaw College (Lancashire)


(Morehead-Cain Scholarship Finalist) University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Matthew Peoples

St Columb's College


Yale University

James Shelley

Christ The King College (Isle Of Wight)


Claremont McKenna College

Scott Sussex

Godalming College (Surrey)


Harvard College

Alexander Waterhouse

Devonport High School for Boys


Dartmouth College

Lucy Wilkins

Brookfield Community School (Derbyshire)


Yale University

Elle Winfield

The Hayfield School


(Robertson Scholarship Recipient) Duke University