The Field Studies Council (FSC) is inviting secondary school students to apply for its annual scholarship programme, with the chance to undertake a residential course or day series of training with specialist environmental tutors. 

Young Darwin scholarship

Source: FSC

Young Darwin scholars carry out invertebrate sampling as part of the environmental training programme.

Outdoor education charity FSC is now accepting applications for its 2022 Young Darwin Scholarship programme, with 75 places available and 90% of the costs covered through various funding streams, such as Generation Green and Our Bright Future. Successful scholars are invited to undertake a residential course or day series training under the leadership of environmental tutors and follow up mentoring and training.

The scheme aims to give young people access to skills and mentoring to help them build a greater understanding of the natural world and explore career options in the environmental sector.

Named after Charles Darwin himself, the programme is in its tenth year and open to young people aged 16 to 25 from across the UK who want to develop their environmental skills and further their understanding of the natural world. 

Dylan Byrne, youth engagement officer for FSC, said the scholarships presented an “unmissable” opportunity for young people interested in developing their passion for the environment and encouraged anyone interested to get their applications in as soon as possible.

He added: “We’ve been running this programme successfully for the last ten years and it’s a fantastic way for young people to develop their environmental skills and knowledge as well as build long-lasting friendships with other like-minded individuals. 

“Due to increased funding, we have 75 places available on the programme this year – which is a fivefold increase in the number of scholarships compared to previous years.” 

About the scheme

The scholarship programme was first introduced at FSC’s Preston Montford field centre near Shrewsbury – the birthplace of Charles Darwin. It starts with a five-day immersive experience integrating fieldwork, biodiversity identification skills, career guidance and networking opportunities. 

Scholars will also have access to ongoing mentoring and support as part of the scholarship programme, as well as online and in-person training from a range of FSC specialist staff and mentors. 

This year, the on-site training will be run at five locations across the UK including the FSC’s own field centres at Preston Montford in Shrewsbury and Caste Head near Cumbria. Scholars will also use the YHA site at Potato Wharf in Manchester and undertake local site visits to Risley Moss and Rixton Clay Pits.

In Bristol, training will be based at YHA Bristol at Narrow Quay and visits to Leigh Woods and Avon Grow Wilder will take place. In London, scholars will use training sites at Stave Hill, Regents Park and Bushy Park. 

Extra support is said to be available for individuals who may financially struggle to cover the remaining 10 per cent of the fees.

Applications for this year’s programme are open until 5th June 2022. For more information and details on how to apply, visit or email Dylan at