Founded in 2004 by Dr Tony Sewell CBE, Generating Genius supports low-income students across the UK to obtain places at top universities and in careers to study Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM). We have a vision to create a thriving and diverse STEM workforce and community. We believe that in order to increase more underrepresented groups getting into STEM you have to start working with them at school age and provide them with long-term engagement.
Generating Genius was originally set up to support Black African and Caribbean boys from low-income households to get into STEM degrees at top universities and into top careers. At the time, this group of students were the lowest achieving group in London. In line with the changing attainment picture in Britain we now support low-income students across the UK of all genders and ethnicities with around 1,500 students joining our programmes every academic year. Generating Genius supports these students through high quality programmes which are carried out in partnership with leading universities and top companies across different industries.
The Impact of Syncona’s support
Generating Genius runs a university scholarship programme which aims to remove all barriers to both the aspiration and achievement of students. These scholarships support students with both university fees and living expenses.
The Syncona Foundation is our biggest scholarship funder who have helped us in putting our vision into action. The scholarship fund from Syncona is called the David Twumasi Syncona Foundation Scholarship, named after the Syncona employee who first brought us to the attention of the Syncona Foundation. The generous donation from the Foundation will allow five Generating Genius students who need it most to be provided with full scholarships that fund all university fees and living expenses throughout their course. The aim is that these scholarships will allow these students to achieve their full potential in a STEM focused degree and then go onto careers within STEM, or continue onto further study/research.
Syncona employees are also offering their knowledge and career development support to the scholars. During their time at university these students will also engage with, and in some cases, intern with Syncona’s portfolio companies. This is part of a longer-term vision for some of these students, in future years, to be part of diversifying the pipeline of talent entering the Syncona workforce.
Testimonials- the impact scholarships have
"The scholarship has helped me with every aspect of university life. The money has helped with a plethora of things such as: groceries, cleaning supplies, my washcard, additional stationary, my library card, society memberships, travel and more. I have learnt that every little thing you do, costs money. Not having to worry about paying for basic necessities or missing out on experiences to afford them has taken a load of stress off my back. I was recently able to put a deposit on a house for next year, that I would’ve struggled to pay off because my student loan unfortunately doesn’t account for future rent however due to the scholarship I can plan ahead and prepare for my 2nd year from now."
- Zara, Biochemistry, University of Reading
“The scholarship has been incredibly beneficial to me this term. I was able to buy a brand new laptop which has made studying and volunteering so much easier. I have also been able to pay for my rent, travel expenses (as my course is partially taught in a different city), and food. The scholarship has equipped me with financial freedom which has allowed me to not worry about money whilst studying a degree that has proven to be quite demanding."
- Erica, Medicine with a Foundation Year, University of Nottingham