During the academic year, Weidenfeld Scholars participate in a number of extra-curricular activities to complement the main components of the Leadership Programme.
Through these activities Scholars are able to build relationships with their fellow Weidenfeld Scholars, alumni, donors, members of other scholarship programmes and notable figures in Oxford, as well as leaders and opinion-shapers from various professional fields across the UK.
Past extracurricular and cultural activities have included:
> The Leadership Programme works to help scholars find placements in order to gain valuable hands-on experience. Recently, thanks to the Louis-Dreyfus Foundation, scholars have benefited from visiting programmes in Africa and India where they have helped to assess several of the Foundation's projects, for example Joseph Ssentongo (Uganda, MPP) has worked with the Louis Dreyfus Task Force for Impact Measurement, Thai Dang (Vietnam, Politics) visited agricultural projects in Myanmar and Khushboo Borah (India, DPhil Plant Sciences) put her academic research into practice collaborating on a biodiversity project.
> Participation in the annual Ditchley Park Conferences on themes which correspond to the academic interests or specialisation of selected scholars. In addition to offering Scholars the opportunity to engage in high-level discussions and to hone their skills as rapporteurs, Ditchley Conferences offer unparalleled networking opportunities. Scholars have previously engaged in conferences on ‘Global power shifts: what do the new players want?’, ‘Problems in the Western Balkans - settled or dominant?’, and ‘States and markets: where are the boundaries?’
> Joint events with other scholarship programmes, such as an annual Rhodes-Weidenfeld dinner and a Weidenfeld-Gates dinner (both organised by Scholars themselves), a reception with the Aurora Scholars (a scholarship programme for indigenous Australians) and various lectures at Rhodes House.
> Throughout the year public lectures are given in honour of the Programme's donors, for example the Annual Hoffmann Lecture.
> Max Weidenfeld Travel Grants which afford Scholars with limited resources the opportunity to attend relevant professional conferences or pursue fieldwork abroad.
> Receptions and informal meetings often involving prominent figures from academia, government, law, business and other fields of expertise.
> Day trips to sites around the region including Blenheim Palace and Highclere Castle.
> Regular informal lunches to give scholars a chance to get together and enjoy each other's company.
Matthew de la Hey in Rwanda for a project supported by the Louis Dreyfus Foundation.
Scholars at the 2014 Weidenfeld Ball.