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QS Connect Masters Scholarship: 2018 Winner

QS Connect Masters Scholarship: 2018 Winner main image

José Ricardo Rodríguez Fajardo is the lucky winner of the QS Connect Masters Scholarship in 2018.

The scholarship, worth US$2,000, is awarded every year exclusively to a student who has taken part in the Connect Masters scheme. Connect Masters is a free service which is part of the QS World Grad School Tour, and allows prospective postgraduates to meet face-to-face with university representatives from around the world in order to professionally discuss their next steps for their career and studies.

José Ricardo, who is from Bogotá, Colombia, is set to further his interest in renewable energy by pursuing a Masters in Electrical Engineering at George Washington University. Having gained his bachelor’s degree from Universidad de Los Andes and worked at one of Colombia’s top engineering and consulting firms, he has decided to study a master’s degree to further his knowledge in the field of energy, having realized that “there was so much I still don’t know and so many opportunities for optimization in the energy field.”

He’s aiming to help the environment to the best of his ability and believes his master’s degree will enable him to learn many specialized topics in his field, while studying abroad will allow him to gain new perspectives on his subject to what he’s found in Colombia, which he says is very focused on hydroelectric power. He also believes that studying abroad will enable him to perhaps work in an alternative energy field after graduation, as well as giving him new ideas for solutions to daily problems in his current field.

José Ricardo found that attending the QS Connect Masters event helped him make his choice, making a complicated process seem much simpler – he says “QS was the instrument that made it all possible; first it gathered a group of top universities from around the world, taking away the problem of searching for the universities by myself. And second, through the personalized meetings I realized the whole process, even if long, was actually not as hard as it seemed.”

He states that being awarded the QS Connect Masters Scholarship has “made it possible for me to cover the initial costs, and enabled me to advance in the admission process without worrying too much. Scholarships are always a huge help, especially for students from countries where the local currency isn’t as strong as the currency in their study destination.”

Advice for other applicants

So what advice would José Ricardo give to others who are looking for a scholarship?

“Don’t get discouraged, even if the process is tough. All it takes is a single person to believe in you, and you will find them if you keep searching. Be consistent and manage your efforts - huge efforts once in a while won’t be very successful, so it’s much better to start several months before your desired course’s start date and spend just an hour searching daily until you find what you are looking for. Also, when selecting a university look for a place where you want to be in, some place where they really care about students, and where you will be able to get a good return for your investment.”

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Written by Sabrina Collier
The former Assistant Editor of TopUniversities.com, Sabrina wrote and edited articles to guide students from around the world on a wide range of topics. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature and Creative Writing from Aberystwyth University and grew up in Staffordshire, UK. 

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