Fees & Living Expenses
The total sum of course fees, college community charge and college deposit come to 26240 pounds, equivalent to 27,13,480 Indian Rupees. I have to submit a financial declaration for the same by June 30, 2021.
International Health Surcharge: £475 for one year
Living expenses: £17000 (based on data from scholarships)
Emergency expenses incl. rent insurance: £1000
Airfare (round trip): £700
Total = £19,523, or 20,15,414 INR
Since 2016, I have been engaged in rapping, student activism, advocacy and community-building against caste, with my work featured in Princeton University's Lewis Centre for Arts, Indian Express, Rolling Stone India, Telegraph India, Business Standard, Scroll, The Print, Newslaundry, Maktoob Media, Dalit Camera, etc.
In the past few years, I've been an active voice on social media to talk about the realities of caste discrimination in higher education and have travelled across the country attending close to 100 events sensitizing young college and university students. I have also worked with French Radio Live (Paris) as a presenter and performing artist on-caste from 2018 to 2020 in various theatres of France. Given my engagement in 2019, I was featured among one of the 15 youths to watch out for the decade by the Times of India.
Today, I am finally in a place to get back to academia and research, which has always been my passion. However, due to unfortunate reasons, I could not secure any funding. The Odisha government initially assured me that they would be contributing to my course fees, but they finally didn’t because this degree would be my second Masters.
And this is where we meet in my story - I am in the extraordinary position to be able to go to my dream university and change not only my life but several others, but I have no financial means to get there.
Research Interests & Life Goals
Going to Oxford, beyond being an academic achievement and life-changing moment is also where I can pioneer a topic of research that is vital to understand and has never been done before.
I plan to do my research on caste in central universities in India - I want to chart the trajectory of Dalit-Bahujan students and their anti-caste political engagements starting from the Ambedkar Students Association in Hyderabad Central University in the 90s, formation of the Birsa Ambedkar Phule Students Association in Jawaharlal Nehru University in 2014, to Rohith Vemula movement in 2016.
Further moving on, I want to study the impact of this trajectory on the shift, like discussions around caste among young students and university campuses, through the digital media boom and large anti-caste political mobilizations in recent years.
My goal is to ultimately create networks and support systems through advocacy groups and by policy intervention through the SC/ST departments in every state to make higher education more accessible to SC/ST students, particularly those from rural areas.
My plans for the future - continuations of my activism and community building - are so closely linked to the research I am hoping to do at Oxford, and I would be grateful for your help to get me there.
So today, I reach out to you because I have run out of options to pay for this opportunity.
Any contribution will help, and I sincerely thank you if you can spread this campaign, move it through your networks or help in any other way. If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org, as I would like to be as transparent as possible with this campaign and its funding request!