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DeepMind's renewed commitment gives further boost to machine learning expertise in Africa
Author: Development & Alumni / Ontwikkeling & Alumni
Published: 03/06/2021

DeepMind, a London-based world leader in artificial intelligence research and its application in the real world, has renewed its commitment to supporting postgraduate students in the fields of applied mathematics, statistics, electrical and electronic engineering and computer science at Stellenbosch University (SU).

Six scholarships are available to students who wish to pursue a two-year MSc in Applied Mathematics or Computer Science or an MEng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, and two scholarships will go to students who are accepted to study towards a PhD in Applied Mathematics, Computer Science, Electrical and Electronic Engineering, Mathematical Statistics or Statistics. These are additional to the scholarships already allocated in 2021.

In 2020, SU became the first African university to be awarded these scholarships by DeepMind. DeepMind was established in London in 2010 and its DeepMind Scholarships are part of a wider initiative by the company to broaden participation in science and support the wider research ecosystem, including in Africa.

Jacobie Mouton, who started her MSc degree in Computer Science this year, and part of the first cohort of scholarship recipients, believes that this opportunity will ensure a much richer and well-rounded postgraduate experience, which will have a meaningful impact on her future career.

“This is a very exciting opportunity for me to improve my research skills and expand my knowledge of the very relevant field of machine learning. And not only this, I also get the chance to interact with other researchers and professionals in the industry through the DeepMind mentor programme and sponsored conference attendance."

Applications for the latest scholarships are now open at, with recipients selected by the University to commence their courses in 2022. The DeepMind Scholarship programme gives talented students from groups currently underrepresented in machine learning, including women, the support that they need to study at leading universities. In addition to financial support, scholarship recipients will have opportunities to attend global conferences and industry events and learn directly from mentors within DeepMind.

“DeepMind's extension of the scholarship programme at Stellenbosch University attests to their commitment of building machine learning expertise in Africa. Last year we were blown away by the massive interest from students, with over 200 applications from 31 African countries," says Willie Brink, Associate Professor of Applied Mathematics and coordinator of the DeepMind Scholarships at SU.

“It is certainly encouraging to learn about the talent and excitement for machine learning that exists all over the continent. I am inspired to continue finding opportunities for postgraduate students in Africa, and I look forward to welcoming the 2022 cohort of DeepMind scholars to Stellenbosch!" 

  • Applications for the 2022 DeepMind Scholarships at Stellenbosch University are now open (click here: and will close on 31 July 2021.
  • For further enquiries, please contact Prof Willie Brink on