Below is a list of some of the organisations that offer grants and bursaries for medical students looking to do electives. See our section on charitable trusts for tips on how to apply.
The Association of Anaesthetists of Great Britain and Ireland Elective Bursary
All medical students in Great Britain and Ireland are eligible to apply to the AAGBI for funding towards a medical student elective period. Preference will be given to those applicants who can show that their intended elective has an anaesthetic, intensive care or pain relief interest.
Beit Trust Medical Elective Bursaries
The Beit Trust offers over 20 bursaries each year for students who plan to undertake self-organised medical electives in southern Africa (Zimbabwe, Malawi or Zambia). Placements of six weeks (or preferably longer), in more rural locations where students can help make a difference to both the hospitals and the lives of those living in the local communities that the hospitals serve, are favoured. National state teaching hospitals are not generally favoured. The Beit Trust is keen to encourage more medical electives in Zimbabwe. Since elective costs in Zimbabwe are sometimes higher than in other countries, larger grants may be awarded.
Website (via Medical Schools Council)
British Society of Dermatologists
The British Association of Dermatologists offers grants to encourage students to undertake small research projects or optional periods in the study of topics related to dermatology or skin biology.
British Association of Dermatologists
4 Fitzroy Square
Tel: 020 7383 0266
British Society for Haematology
The Society provides Student Scholarships with a maximum value of £1,000 to support UK-based undergraduates undertaking electives in the field of haematology.
British Association of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons
BAPRAS offers students bursaries intended to provide financial support for medical students who wish to undertake research, travel or an elective in a subject related to plastic surgery.
British Geriatrics Society
Offers a limited number of grants to enable medical students to make use of their elective period for a project concerned with health or health care in old age, either in the UK or abroad.
British Medical and Dental Student’s Trust
A registered charity in both England and Scotland, which provides travel scholarships to help support medical and dental students going abroad for their electives.
CoScan Travel Awards
The Travel Award Scheme offers valuable assistance to young people travelling to the Nordic countries for study or adventure.
The Daiwa Foundation awards grants to individuals and institutions in the UK and Japan in all areas of the visual and performing arts, the humanities, the social sciences, science and engineering, mathematics, business studies, education (including schools and universities), and grassroots and professional groups.
The Dermatology Foundation’s Research Awards Program offers career development awards, fellowships, and grants that are intended to advance the early academic careers and research efforts of physicians and scientists in dermatology and cutaneous biology.
Edinburgh Medical Mission Society
EMMS International offers grants to assist medical, dental, nursing and therapy students, (e.g. nursing, physiotherapy, occupational therapy) who are undertaking their elective at a mission hospital overseas.
The Electives Network
For over a decade, The Electives Network (TEN) has been building a comprehensive elective database, complete with contact details, photos, feedback reports, and case studies. Membership to The Electives Network is free for UK medical students through The MDU. TEN also have a team of elective experts on hand 24/7 to help you with advice and one on one information. Awards include the Dr Hamilton Award and the Electives Network Award.
Faculty of Occupational Medicine
The Faculty of Occupational Medicine has two elective prizes, the Mobbs Corporate Health Fellowships and the Exxon Mobil Medical Student Elective award. These are are open to medical undergraduates and doctors in Foundation Years 1 and 2. The aim is to enable students and junior doctors to experience work in an occupational health/medicine environment, in the UK or overseas.
The Gen Foundation supports those who excel in the areas of biological, chemical, botanical, and food sciences.
Institute of Medical Ethics
The Institute of Medical Ethics (IME) offers grants, student elective bursaries, internships and scholarships (covering the next academic year) for students wishing to do an intercalated degree in medical ethics or an allied subject. These grants are only for undergraduate students.
Lady Allen of Hurtwood Memorial Trust
Applications are invited from candidates with a scheduled travel project in mind. They must offer full details of how the award will help them to gain specific knowledge and experience, which will enhance the quality and nature of their work with young children and their families.
The Medic Portal
The Medic Portal currently offer three elective prizes of varying amounts. Applications are via essay and should be e-mailed to the elective team.
Medical Women’s Federation
The Medical Women’s Federation awards and oversees a variety of grants and prizes throughout the year. Contact the central office or visit the website to download application forms and view deadlines.
McKenna Charitable Trust
Grants for individuals in need in England and Wales with particular emphasis on educational needs and provision of support for people with disabilities. Please note they do not accept unsolicited applications.
c/o Buzzacott LLP
12 New Fetter Lane
Tel: 020 7556 1200
MDDUS Student Members can also benefit from the opportunity to apply for an elective travel scholarship from the British Medical and Dental Student Trust (BMDST).
Nursing Association of Jamaica
A national non-profit making charitable association formed in 1978. They offer one-off grants for students of health education or sciences, primarily from black and minority groups.
The Society offers a range of grants to support high quality research in pathology and travel to encourage collaboration and the learning of new techniques.
Professional Medical Finance
An Elective Bursary is offered through Professional Medical Education.
Reg Gilbert International Youth Friendship Trust (GIFT)
GIFT supports outgoing young UK citizens to establish friendships and direct cultural contacts through ‘homestay’ visits with indigenous communities in developing countries. They give a limited number of bursaries each year to young adventurers who have made their arrangements through bona-fide organisations who arrange homestay projects in third world countries. Independent travellers would need to submit a comprehensive and verifiable breakdown of their arrangements.
The Renal Association awards 8 bursaries each year to medical students planning to undertake electives with a significant renal component, either clinical or research.
Roger and Miriam Pilkington Trust
Grants to medical students aged 18-25 towards costs of electives at home and abroad. Applicants must raise a significant proportion of funds needed through their own efforts.
Mrs Jane Fagan
C/o Brabners Chaffe Street
Tel: 0151 600 3000
Up to four grants are available each year to undergraduate medical students at UK universities, who will be undertaking a medical elective overseas.
Royal College of Radiologists
Ten bursaries funded by The Royal College of Radiologists, to assist UK clinical medical undergraduate students to undertake periods of elective study, in the UK or abroad, in clinical radiology.
Royal College of Surgeons
The Preiskel Prize is an award for clinical students wishing to pursue a career in surgery and planning to undertake an elective in surgery in the developing world.
Royal Society of Medicine
The RSM runs a variety of competitions and awards for medical students. See the RSM website for a full list of awards and prizes.
Society for General Microbiology
SGM offer a limited number of awards to enable medical, dental and veterinary science undergraduates to work on microbiological research projects during their elective periods/extramural studies.
St Francis Leprosy Guild
The St. Francis Leprosy Guild provides funding for elective students wishing to undertake their elective on a leprosy-related subject.
If you know of any more organisations or awards to add to this list, please get in touch.