Front Quad of Lincoln College, the walls covered in bright green ivy


Funding for Catharine French Graduate Scholarship secured

20 Oct 2023

Collage of four pictures of Catharine French: posing with a man and a woman in green Barclays t-shirts, speaking at a mic with the Barclays logo in the background, seated with a woman, and seated with a group of women in red t-shirts

We are delighted to announce that full funding has been secured for the Catharine French Graduate Scholarship, which will be available from 2024/25. The Scholarship will support a graduate student from Africa, preferably female, to undertake a one-year MSc in Economics for Development at the Oxford Department of International Development or a Master’s degree in the Department of Economics.

The Scholarship was established by the Dodd/French family with the support of Barclays Bank, Lincoln College and the Social Sciences Division at the University of Oxford. It was created to honour the memory of Catharine French (1966-2000) and the extraordinary work and tireless commitment she gave to the causes she espoused.

A graduate of Lincoln College, Oxford, Catharine came up in 1985 to read History and Economics and was a leader in her year. After Oxford, she joined the financial services industry and was a quiet trailblazer for the advancement of women in business, an advocate for financial inclusion and diversity, and a supporter of development in Africa.

During a 16-year career at Barclays Bank, Catharine was a mentor to many, especially young female entrants in the industry, and advocated true diversity across the financial services industry. As Chair of Banking on Change, Catharine helped bring financial services to 500,000 customers, mainly women, across seven African countries and found 25,000 micro-enterprises. She visited Africa regularly, both for business and pleasure. Africa, financial inclusion, and promoting diversity in leadership were three of Catharine’s passions.

Catharine sadly died from cancer at age 53 and her

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