Students Urged to Take the Road to Success

Following the overwhelming response from students to last year's inaugural MEL Student Scholarship, the application process for the academic year 2012-13 was launched on the M6toll website on Monday 23rd January. As last year, MEL will be awarding 10 scholarships, each to the value of £2000 at the beginning of the January 2013, to Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent students who are going on to study mathematics, the sciences, technology or engineering to degree or equivalent level.

The Scholarship is only available to pupils in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent schools, Sixth Form Academies or Further Education Colleges and who are resident in these local authority areas. The Scholarships will be awarded through an application process, which will be judged by a Midland Expressway panel with the assistance of the two Local Authorities in September. Throughout the application process, the student will need to explain what they intend to study and why, how the award will benefit their future studies, and their commitment to give something back to Staffordshire and Stoke.

Tom Fanning, Chief Executive of Midland Expressway said: "I am very pleased to announce that we have continued with this partnership with Staffordshire County Council and Stoke-on-Trent City Council. Our business is located within the County and we wish to play our part in creating opportunity for our young people to develop their talents. Following the Government's decision to increase tuition fees this year, we feel that this scholarship will make a real difference to local students and I call upon other businesses in the region to follow our lead.

"Following the Scholarship launch, we have received very positive feedback from education bodies and students alike and we have started to receive application forms, but we would urge all eligible students to apply by the closing date of Friday 30th March to be in with a chance of being awarded a Scholarship."

Leader of Stoke-on-Trent City Council Mohammed Pervez said: "Graduates in subjects such as science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) are key to our city's future prosperity and will help us to attract new businesses into Stoke-on-Trent. Our local colleges and sixth forms are currently seeing an increase in the numbers of students studying STEM related subjects at A level or equivalent and then going on to study these disciplines at university. In the current economic climate, students are thinking carefully about the financial implications of committing themselves to higher education and their subsequent career opportunities so the opportunity to receive a scholarship to support their studies is a major incentive."

Leader of Staffordshire County Council Philip Atkins added:  "This scholarship is excellent news for young people in Staffordshire, and will give them a welcome financial boost on their way to further education.  The essence of this scholarship is the emphasis not just on helping Staffordshire young people, but also what these young people can give back to Staffordshire once they have completed their education.  We are very keen to nurture the talent we have in this county, as well as ensuring the county as a whole benefits.  I want to congratulate Midland Expressway Limited for helping the county's young people, and echo their call to other businesses to follow suit."

Further to this, any student applying will have to ask their head teacher, head of sixth form or principal to complete a separate statement of recommendation on their behalf which will be provided upon receipt of the student's application. Those most likely to be successful will be students who show high potential to succeed and who will gain most from the financial award. 

Student applications close on Friday 30th March, and forms can be downloaded from