Alperton woman raises £10k in just 10 days to pay Oxford University fees

Rachael Owhin

Rachael Owhin - Credit: Archant

A determined woman from Alperton has raised £10,000 in less than 10 days to pay for her fees at Oxford University after her story captured the hearts of scores across the UK.

Rachael Owhin

Rachael Owhin - Credit: Archant

Rachael Owhin, from the Abbey Estate, leapt for joy after fighting off stiff competition to become one of only 48 students worldwide chosen to do a masters’ in Migration Studies at the prestigious university.

But her joy turned into dismay after the 23-year-old realised that she would be unable to pay the £18,110 tuition fees needed upfront.

The devout Christian was in a race against time to raise the money in time for her deadline today.

Ms Owhin had £6,000 savings and family members have given her a further £2,000 but was still left with a shortfall of more than £10,000.

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Desperate to find funds, having failed to secure a scholarship or come up with an alternative arrangement of payment with the university, she launched a public appeal on August 21 via fundraising website hubbub.

She hoped to raise the five-figure sum within ten days, under the handle #OXFORD10000, to meet the university’s deadline.

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Thanks to the efforts of hundreds of supporters and donators, the funds were raised in eight days and exceeded her target by almost £1,000.

She said: “I am completely shocked and overwhelmed by what has been accomplished. When I first started the appeal, people thought I was crazy and will never achieve my target.

“To say I am over the moon would be an understatement. Large numbers of people who do not even know me gave generously which was really heart warming and has completely restored my faith in humanity.

“I just want to thank everyone who helped with this campaign from the bottom of my heart, and God for giving me the idea and courage to carry it out.”

Prior to the university application, Ms Owhin spent a year at the renowned Spelman College, in America, where she met media mogul Oprah Winfrey, during her four years studying Law with American Studies at Sussex University.

She said: “Meeting Oprah was amazing. She is an inspirational figure to me and many others particularly in the black community.”

Ms Owhin, aspires to become a professor who works to help people from ethnic deprived backgrounds to follow successful career paths.

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