Carol Vorderman awards £2,000 bursaries to students studying maths in Wales

Carol Vorderman is giving nine bursaries worth £2,000 each to students studying maths at Swansea University, in a bid to help those from disadvantaged backgrounds.

They will be given to UK applicants for full-time undergraduate programmes in mathematics or actuarial science who will join the university in South Wales in September 2022.

The former Countdown star, 61, who went to a state-funded school in Prestatyn, said she wants to help students from a background similar to her own.

She wrote on Twitter: “I’m giving nine bursaries to students who are applying to @SwanseaUni to study Maths this year.

“I particularly want to help students from a similar background to my own (comp and on free school meals) but these bursaries are available to all good luck.”

Applications will be assessed by a selection panel, which will look into the background of the students and their answers to questions about motivation to study at university and career aspirations.

Students from disadvantaged backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Vorderman said she was inspired by her mathematics teacher to read engineering at Cambridge University and was one of only a few female students.

It comes after the Government’s social mobility tsar was criticised for comments implying that girls do not study A-level science because they dislike “hard maths”.

Katharine Birbalsingh also told a meeting of the Science and Technology Committee that girls do not seem to “fancy” physics as much as other subjects.