OCTOBER 28, 2020


The Laidlaw Foundation is partnering with Cornell University to offer 25 exceptional students annually an Undergraduate Research and Leadership Scholarship designed to develop a new generation of leaders who believe in evidence-based truths and ethical leadership.

Open to students from all disciplines, freshmen and sophomore undergraduates who are passionate about changing the world are given the training and opportunity to become active global citizens and future leaders. The core components of the scholarship teach students to conduct impactful research and develop their leadership potential.

Successful applicants will join a network of 1000+ scholars from Ivy League and Russell Group universities globally.

“Now more than ever, we need to provide students with opportunities and leadership tools to foster meaningful international engagement,” said Wendy Wolford, Vice Provost of International Affairs. “The Laidlaw Scholars Program prioritizes these experiences, reaching across our diverse student body to create globally-connected and impactful leaders.”

“We have always admired Cornell’s revolutionary spirit, research excellence and ethos,” said Susanna V. Kempe, CEO of the Laidlaw Foundation. “It gives us enormous pleasure therefore to welcome them to the Laidlaw Scholarship network. Together we will be developing the Next Generation of Leaders who are diverse, passionate, evidence-based thinkers, committed to leading with integrity.”

Admissions for the scholarships will open in November.

Scholarship Program Details

Scholars spend the first summer of the program conducting an independent research project, developing analytical, investigative, problem solving and data management skills. Throughout the program, leadership development led by Cornell’s Office of Engagement Initiatives will instil core leadership values and skills in every participant. In their second summer, Scholars put their learning into practice. Immersive, six-week projects ranging from sustainable development expeditions to research-based initiatives, give Laidlaw Scholars the opportunity to work outside of their comfort zones, expanding their perspectives and helping disadvantaged communities.

After graduating from the program, Laidlaw Scholars will remain connected to a network of global, like-minded peers from world-leading universities. The Laidlaw Scholars Network is an online community that allows scholars to showcase their achievements, connect & collaborate with each other on meaningful projects, and ‘pay forward’ their expertise to help others succeed.


Laidlaw at Cornell

The Mario Einaudi Center for International Studies at Cornell will be administering the program for undergraduate students in partnership with Cornell’s Office of Engagement Initiatives, which will implement the leadership training component. 

The program is open to freshmen and sophomore students across disciplines who embody the values of a Laidlaw Scholar: ethical leadership, treating others with respect, and prioritizing integrity.

About the Laidlaw Foundation

The Laidlaw Foundation invests in the education of the underprivileged and underrepresented in order to break the cycle of poverty, reduce inequality and develop a new generation of leaders.

Media Contact

Kristin Ramsay

Cornell University