Accessibility statement

The Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund
Department of Biology
University of York

A Fund has been set up in the memory of Radhika V Sreedhar, a PhD student in the Sweeney Lab of the Biology Department of the University of York, who suddenly died on 1st November 2011 at the young age of 28.

Radhika was a vivacious, vibrant and a promising scientist who had made an excellent start in her chosen field of neuroscience. Her early work showed great promise and she had wished to continue a career in science and contribute to society. 

In the other facets of her life, she was a lovely human being and showed abundant care and goodwill to her colleagues and friends. She was a valued member of the lab, helpful in attitude and welcoming to new members and is greatly missed. She herself strongly supported philanthropy and contributed to many humanitarian causes.

The main purpose of the Fund will be to support Biology research students who are showing a strong academic performance. The Funds will be made available to eligible MSc by Research & PhD scholars, who can demonstrate a strong case.  PhD students may apply from their second year onwards.  These emerging academics will benefit from the immediate funding to help them complete and carry on successful careers as a result of support from the Radhika Fund.

The scholarship fund is to assist research students through a period of self-funding, with a particular focus on overseas students, who need extra support at the end of their degree; especially in their final stages.  Grants of £500 and £1000 will be awarded.

The Fund is administered by the Department of Biology: a panel led by the Chair of Graduate Studies and Dr Sean Sweeney will consider applications.



1. Self-funded PhD students:

  • Self-funded PhD students will be considered for support on the basis of need.
  • Each year students will be invited to apply for awards of £500 or £1000.
  • A student can apply for up to a total of £2000 during the course of a PhD.
  • Where demand for support exceeds funds available, priority will be given to students from overseas.   
  • Scholarship payments will be made into the student’s bank account.

2. Self-funded Masters by Research students:

  • Self-funded Masters by Research students will be considered for support on the basis of need.
  • Students will be invited to apply for awards of £500.
  • Students are permitted to apply for funds during the final 3 months of their Masters.
  • Where demand for support exceeds funds available, priority will be given to students from overseas. 
  • Scholarship payments will be made into the student’s bank account.

How to apply

Students should submit:

  • a covering letter (max 300 words) explaining why they need financial help
  • their CV (max 2 pages)
  • letters of support from their supervisor and a member of their TAP

All applicants must demonstrate that they are in excellent academic standing and have met all the programme requirements to date to a high standard, e.g. assessments, supervisory reports and TAP meetings on time.

Please email your application documents (in one combined pdf) to

Applications will open soon.


We will be hosting a bake sale in September/October (date to be confirmed) to raise funds. Prospective applicants are expected to volunteer to help with this event. 


Previous PhD recipients

Shikin Ihsan 2017
I am deeply feel grateful to have been awarded a grant by the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund. It is indeed incredibly helpful to me and my family with funding for the last few months of my PhD study here. I am at the final writing stage of my project and being able to fully focus on my work, without having to worry about financial constraint is a great relief to me. I appreciate the generosity of the Biology Department by considering my application as well as the benefactors of the Radhika V. Sreedhar Memorial Scholarship Fund. I pray that all people who are directly and indirectly involved with the process of this award will always be blessed by God, and may the soul of Radhika stay happy and peaceful in the next world. It is so kind-hearted of her family to be helping other students particularly in the Biology Department, York University through this fund. As I was one of the winners of the Biology Bake-Off competition in 2016, I am looking forward to contributing home-made cakes as part of the effort to raise monies for the scholarship fund. May this fund continue to support other students in future. Thank you so much.

Rebeca Ridings-Figueroa 2016
I am very grateful to have been awarded a grant by the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund. It will prove incredibly helpful to me and my family with funding the last few months of my Masters by research. I am currently working in the Coverley lab, investigating the
function of the Ciz1 protein in the process of X chromosome inactivation. I am at the writing stage of my project and being able to fully focus on my work, without having to worry about financial constraints is of great relief to me. I really appreciate the generosity of the Biology Department as well as the benefactors of the Radhika V. Sreedhar Memorial Scholarship Fund. This award will make a real difference to me.

Leda Liyue Cai 2016

I feel deeply honoured and privileged to be the recipient of the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship. The award is an acknowledgment of my work as a researcher and a motivation to continue achieving high academic standards. The scholarship was awarded to me at a critical point of my research when I was worried that my funds will run out and I would be unable to continue. This will allow me now to focus fully on my research without worrying about financial constraints.  

Zakuan Shamsul Harumain 2016


First and foremost, I would humbly like to thank the Radhika V. Sreedhar family for their generosity and kindness on giving us an opportunity to get some financial support for our studies. As one of the luckiest recipient, I am truly honoured, blessed and feeling thankful for having this award especially when my scholarship is longer sponsoring me at the final part of my study period.

By having this award, it gave me an opportunity to fully concentrate on my PhD work.

Thank you! Terima kasih!

 Xiang Li 2015


I am honored to be one of the recipients of the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship.

As a 3rd year PhD student, time is the most valuable thing in my studies. I am currently doing some part time jobs to cover my daily expenses. Great thanks to this scholarship, some of my time will be freed from those jobs, and will be devoted into my research to have a better academic achievement.

I would also like to thank the whole department of biology for all the generous support.

Adama Cole 2015


I feel deeply pleased, fortunate and grateful to be a beneficiary of the Radhika V. Sreedhar Memorial Scholarship Fund. When I first arrived in UK, I did not have much cash with me as the processing of my stipend was delayed by my funding body for about two months. This caused me a lot of anxiety and mental stress as I was worried about how I would start my PhD program with very limited funds. However, when I met with the administrative staff of the Biology department and informed about the Radhika V. Sreedhar Memorial Scholarship Fund, this was welcome news. This award of a RVS Scholarship meant that I could start my program of research study and concentrate on my work without worrying about financial constraints.

In conclusion, I am deeply appreciative and grateful to both the Biology department and the benefactors that have established the RVS fund. It has had a major impact on my personal circumstances and career as a PhD student at the University of York.

Ming Yang 2014

Statement of Gratitude

It is my great privilege to receive the Radhika V Sreedhar Scholarship. The award is not only an acknowledgement of my competency as a research student but also a strong motivation for me to achieve higher academic standards in the following 18 months of my PhD study.

Coincidentally, I was awarded the Scholarship soon after I received the invitation to the 31st Microelectrode Techniques for Cell Physiology Workshop in Plymouth this September, which is a prestigious and intensive training course for electrophysiologists around the world with high entry standards. I am most grateful for the fund since it will help me to cover the fees of the Workshop.

Again, I would express my thankfulness to the Department for the generous support that I have received. The award will be a great asset in my future academic career.

Izhar Ahmad 2014


I am privileged and honoured to have help through the Radhika V Sreedhar scholarship at a critical stage of my PhD.

I was struggling with my funding at final stages of my PhD because of the stoppage of stipend from my funding body and was desperately looking for support. I would say this is an on time and much needed gift for me from the department. Now I can wholeheartedly concentrate on writing my thesis and papers and submission of my thesis before the final deadline.

Again I would say a big thanks to the department of biology for helping me in the completion of my studies.

Nitin Kumar 2013


It’s been an honor to be the first recipient of a Radhika V Sreedhar scholarship.

This scholarship motivated me to focus on my studies during the last phase of my PhD studies and this helped me complete my degree well before my final deadline. While studying, my abstract was chosen for an oral presentation at the spring conference of the Society for General Microbiology in Warwick. I have recently joined the Sanger Institute as a postdoc in bioinformatics.

I would like to thank you for your generosity and your confidence in me that has helped me in achieving my goals.

Previous Masters Recipients

Masters Scholarship Awards 2015

Jingwei Chen


 I am really surprised about being one of the successful candidates for The Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship. Actually it is my first time to receive such a meaningful scholarship in UK.

This scholarship not only provides financial support for me, but also confirms my studies here. I am particular interested in cancer research. Actually, I will join in prostate cancer research unit in The University of York biology department. Further, I am also applying PhD project regarding breast cancer study here. As a self-funded study, it is really a heavy financial burden for me. Even though, I will devote myself into the oncology study and pursue scientific findings.

Again, I appreciate the generosity of Department offering me this scholarship.  It is the first treasure in my academic career and will inspire me reaching more success. 

Lucia Chmurova


I would like to express my gratitude for receiving the Radhika V. Sreedhar Memorial Scholarship Fund.

Due to the intense nature of my Masters course, I have not been able to secure a part-time job so far. This fund will help me to fully concentrate on my studies and successfully finish my degree in Ecology and Environmental Management. It will also help with funding towards my summer research placement, which I have to undertake as a part of my course. I hope that this placement will broaden my skills and make me a better candidate for my future job.

I really appreciate the generosity of the Radhika V. Sreedhar Memorial Scholarship Fund and I will very happily acknowledge this fund in any work that may eventuate from my degree.


Masters Scholarship Awards 2014

Tristan Henser-Brownhill

I am incredibly grateful to be receiving this year's (2014) Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund. I am currently undertaking my research placement at the CRUK London Research Institute's Lincoln's Inn Fields laboratories (soon to form part of the new Francis Crick Institute). I am working in the Epigenetics Laboratory, under the supervision of Dr. Paola Scaffidi, investigating epigenetic differences to separate proliferative tumour propagating cells from quiescent cells in heterogeneous populations; with the long term aim of developing treatments to reprogram more aggressive cancer cells to differentiate and cease dividing. 

Living in London is incredibly expensive, and the scholarship will help enormously towards my living costs whilst conducting my research. I hope to pursue a future career in epigenetics, making use of the tools I have acquired, both during my time in the fantastic Imaging and Cytometry laboratories in York's Technology Facility, and my current placement here at the LRI.

I encourage everyone to consider making a donation to the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund to help students with ability and enthusiasm to move up the, often incredibly financially taxing, ladder towards successful scientific careers.


Eduardo Gómez Castañeda

I really appreciate the generosity and the care that the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship represents.  Move to another country always has it difficulties and in a year in which my family was in a difficult situation this funding has renew my illusion and represents a very important help to pay my maintenance the remaining time of my master program, allowing me to concentrate in my research and education. 

I am focusing my career in haematology. I am performing the second project of my master in the LUMC (Netherlands) and I will start after this program a PhD in Glasgow (Paul O'Gorman Leukaemia Research Centre).  

I acknowledge the confidence placed in me and I will do my bests to be worthy of this scholarship.  Thank you very much.  We will never forget this help.

Mengdi Li

I am very pleasure and excited to get this scholarship. It is like an award to confirm my efforts and give me more confidence for my future study.

During my external placement, it will not only help me save time, concentrate on my project and also encourage me to go to more seminars and exchange my ideas with others. This scholarship will help me get a better result of my project and hopefully I will publish a paper in the end.

I have to say thank you because this scholarship gives me confidence which let me believe that all the problems I am facing to now will be solved in the end.


Shruti Muddebihal 

I was thrilled to learn about my selection for this scholarship and would like to express my sincere gratitude to the panel for bestowing this honour upon me.  It has served as a great source of motivation and support to help me complete the rest of my studies successfully. 


Giovanna Pesante

 I am extremely pleased to have been awarded a grant by the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund.

The scholarship means a great deal to me, as it gives me the financial help I need to be able to complete the MSc course in Bioscience Technology. As part of the course I am at present undertaking a placement at the Food and Environment Research Agency in York, where I am gaining the experience and the skills I need for the change of career that motivated me to join the Master. I am hopeful that this will lead to a career in the field of environmental biotechnologies, and I am very grateful to the Radhika V. Sreedhar Scholarship Fund panel for their generosity and trust and for allowing me to follow my passions and achieving my career goals.  


Post-award requirements

A student receiving an award from the RVS scholarship fund will be required to acknowledge this support on the publications and posters that come from the student’s PhD or Masters work. It should also be acknowledged in the student’s thesis. The award will be publicised on the University of York graduate webpages and a photograph of the students will be requested. Students are also required to organise - with the help of the Biology Graduate Office - a cake sale in the Department to help raise more funds for the scheme. The cake sale normally takes place in the first week of the Autumn term.