The future of one of Scotland’s most prestigious student scholarships has been secured by a new partnership between the University of St Andrews and The R&A Foundation.
A new five-year partnership agreement will see the £2 million scholarship fund, established in the memory of Dr Ernest Ransome, President of Pine Valley Golf Club who died in 2013, transfer from the Ransome Trust to the University, with two officials from the R&A Foundation nominated to join the selection committee – Martin Slumbers (Chief Executive) and John Murray (Executive Director – Finance). The new scholarship will be known as The R&A Ransome Scholarship.
The Ransome Scholarship was originally established in 1994 as the Dr Ernest L Ransome III Scholarship, as a way for the friends and associates of Dr Ransome to recognise his commitment to philanthropy, education and athletics.
Since then the Scholarship has supported over 90 students with full tuition fees, accommodation costs, a book allowance and a travel allowance – in a mission to enrich the experience of deserving students.
Samantha Hufford, graduated scholar 2009, commented: “My time at St Andrews was nothing short of incredible. I feel so lucky and am extraordinarily grateful to Dr Ransome and the Trust for providing me with this once in a lifetime opportunity. Not only was the cultural experience at St Andrews eye opening, the academic experience was life altering. I sincerely hope all future R&A Ransome Scholars have the same quality of experience that I was fortunate to have.”
The University hopes that the new partnership will allow Samantha’s hopes to be realised.
Dr Ransome was not only a leading businessman but also an exceptional golfer. He was club champion, a board member, president and chairman of Pine Valley Golf Club in Clementon, NJ, and recipient of the USGA medal for service to the sport.
Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A, said: “Ernie Ransome was a highly respected member of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and we are delighted to be involved in continuing the tremendous scholarship programme which was established in his name.”
In June 2001 the University awarded him an honorary doctorate of laws, and the opportunity for others to study at the University was a legacy he was proud of: “My association with St Andrews has been marked with events that have served to become some of my most cherished memories. At the top of this list is the scholarship trust a group of my friends in 1994 established in my name.
“Almost every student has told me that the opportunity to be able to attend this wonderful university and receive such an outstanding education was a life changing experience. Knowing that they might not have had the opportunity to pursue their dreams and fine careers without the help of this scholarship is unbelievably rewarding for me.”
Notes to news editors
Earlier this year Ransome Scholar Mary Shiraef wrote an open letter to donors supporting The R&A Ransome Scholarship.
Dr Ernest Ransome is commemorated by a tree that stands outside St Salvator’s Hall of Residence.
Issued by the University of St Andrews Communications Office, contactable on 01334 462530 or firstname.lastname@example.org.Student experience