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Current Priorities


Sir David Harrison Fund

With great sadness, Selwyn announced the death of Sir David Harrison in March this year. Sir David’s remarkable association with Selwyn lasted for almost 73 years from his arrival as an undergraduate in 1950. It continued when he became a fellow in 1957 and saw him serve the college as a tutor, senior tutor and, from 1994 – 2000, as master.

To celebrate Sir David’s enduring connection to Selwyn, which spanned more than half its existence, the college has decided to create the Sir David Harrison Fund, which will act as a lasting memorial to his immense contribution to the lives of generations of Selwyn students. For more information, please click here.



At the heart of a Cambridge education is the supervision system.  Supervisions create a unique environment, one which gives students individual contact with those at the cutting edge of their field, and demands that they come prepared to engage thoughtfully and creatively with the subject at hand.  By learning in this way, our students develop self-confidence, critical thinking skills, intellectual curiosity and mental agility: qualities which set them apart for the rest of their lives.  The supervision system has for very many years been the cornerstone of a Cambridge education, but this system is coming under immense pressure as the method of funding higher education in the UK changes.

Individual attention

Individual and small group teaching is a very expensive method of education.  Cambridge and Oxford have the highest staff to student ratios across the UK and on average a Cambridge degree costs £21,000 a year to provide.  

Selwyn is determined to make sure that all our students, regardless of the subject they are studying, are given the highest quality teaching possible, and to do this we need to be able to attract and support the best academics and researchers. 

To support the supervision system, please donate here.


Student Support

The Annual Fund seeks to raise funds for student support.  Students who matriculated this autumn are paying fees of £9,250 a year on top of living expenses, and with this increase it is clear that the current levels of support provided by the University and the College will soon be insufficient.  Selwyn has made it a priority to raise funds to ensure that no student feels as though Cambridge is beyond their financial reach. 


General Purposes

Selwyn is navigating unprecedented financial circumstances. Every gift to Selwyn's general purposes helps us to continue providing world class education in a welcoming and supportive environment.


Friends of Selwyn Gardens

Please consider supporting Selwyn’s wonderful gardens as a Friend of Selwyn Gardens.

Selwyn’s glorious gardens are a hidden Cambridge gem. Developed over 140 years they include traditional sweeping lawns, mixed with mature trees, rich and varied borders and beds and shrubs which reflect the college’s connections around the world.

Friends of Selwyn Gardens is a new scheme, open to all, which will provide additional help for the Head Gardener, enabling a range of new initiatives, from tree planting to major projects, enriching the college’s grounds for future generations to enjoy.

All donations from the Friends will be used exclusively towards maintaining and preserving Selwyn’s gardens as a place for everyone to enjoy for decades to come.

To find out more about supporting the gardens, please click here.


Building our endowment

Selwyn's endowment currently stands at £62.1m, one of the lowest endowments in Cambridge. In fact, Selwyn has only 37% of the average College endowment, but we have 100% of the average student numbers. To ensure the college's financial future, we must increase our endowment in line with other colleges.

To this end, the college is focussing on raising funds for the top priorities of student support and teaching . These are essential to Selwyn's core activity - providing the very highest quality teaching and education to the brightest and most able students, no matter what their background or financial circumstance, in buildings fit for the 21st century.