The Deanery

The Deanery consists of the Dean, Dr Duncan Needham, and the Deputy Deans, Mr Tim Milner and Dr Simone Weyand. They are assisted by three members of staff, Karen Knight, Gillian Davies and Mel Garrett who are very approachable and can deal with many straightforward enquiries.

Together with the Graduate Tutors, the Deans oversee the admission, registration, health, and general welfare of all graduate members and carry out all the functions associated with a Senior Tutor in other Colleges.  All postgraduate members may see the Dean and the Deputy Deans on any matter (be it academic, financial, welfare, personal, etc.) by appointment through the Deanery Office (see contact details below).

Postal address: Deanery Office, Darwin College, Silver Street, Cambridge CB3 9EU

Mrs Karen Knight (Deanery Office Manager)

Miss Gillian Davies (Deanery Administrator)

Miss Mel Garrett (Deanery Administrator)

Tel: +44 (0) 1223 335675 (during normal office hours)

Tel: +44 (0) 1223 35660 (Porters’ Lodge for emergencies)

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Conduct in College

The College is an international community of scholars whose members are admitted without discrimination. The Governing Body expects all members to uphold the good standing of the College as a place of education, learning and research, and to obey the Master’s decision on all matters within his authority.

The College hopes all members will make full use of the lunching and dining facilities provided by the College; members are encouraged to dine in College at least once a week during Full Term. Academic Gowns should be worn to Formal Hall Dinners, Guest Nights and Official Dinners.

In general, the College is run with as little internal regulation and as few rules as are necessary for the general comfort and wellbeing of all.  However, as the Vice Masters and Dean are responsible for discipline, it is appropriate that certain guidelines should be followed.  Where relevant, these guidelines also apply when using social media.

1.     Every graduate member is entitled to a private life, and there is a genuine desire to stay out of personal matters unless the member concerned would like help. On the other hand, if asked to help, the Vice Masters, Dean and their staff will do all they can to provide confidential assistance.

2.     It is important that members do not disturb the lives of others. There are many ways in which this can arise. Noisy parties for example, that go on until the early hours, or loud music played privately during the night, can disturb the sleep of members in adjacent rooms, or neighbours near to College hostels.  Communal facilities, such as kitchens, must be kept clean and tidy by those who use them. (See also Guidelines for Parties in Hostels)

3.     College rooms are provided for the sole use of the occupants; long-term sharing is not allowed. Occasional overnight guests are permitted – please do not abuse this dispensation. The Guest book which is kept in the Porters’ Lodge must be signed on each occasion to comply with fire regulations. (See also Guests in Your Room)

4.     It is College policy that, when members become involved with the civil or criminal law, the College will intervene only in exceptional circumstances.

5.     The Vice Masters and Dean will not excuse any physical action directed against College staff, other members, or College or personal property, and will take appropriate action as required.

6.     Following a DCSA campaign and referendum, Darwin has adopted a no-smoking policy throughout the College which also includes all student accommodation.

The Vice Masters and Dean hope that all members will endorse these principles as fair and reasonable. They are always willing to discuss their application with any member.

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Darwin College Student Support Fund

The College has funds to help with financial emergencies that can occur once a student is already in Cambridge.  Awards are small, with most ranging from £100 to £1000, and an average award of c. £300.  Please note that hardship funds are intended to help current students cover short-term living costs, particularly if incomes have not kept pace with rising costs during the current inflation.  College financial support is not intended to cover tuition fees or regular College bills which students are expected to be able to cover before they begin their course.  Applications are considered throughout the year. There are no specific deadlines and outcomes are usually communicated within a week.

Please contact your College Graduate Tutor for details on how to apply for College and University financial support.

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Travel Grants

Two sources of limited support are available for academic travel. The grants are distributed by competition (either termly or yearly) with corresponding deadlines. Further details and an application form are available here:

Travel Fund Application Form

Guidelines – Darwin Travel Fund

The College has no funds to provide financial assistance to off-set the costs of research, and travel grants are not available for work or travel that is essential to a candidate’s studies.

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Darwin College Sports Bursaries

Darwin College offers Sports Bursaries to student athletes who represent the College at a University level (Blues and Half Blues). Those with significant other sporting commitments may also be considered in exceptional cases. The Darwin College Blues Sports Bursary is awarded annually at the end of Lent term.

Please note that we can usually only cover subscription fees, though in some cases we can contribute to equipment costs.  We are not in a position to reimburse for travel to training camps. All applicants are required to submit a brief summary of expenses plus original supporting documents (relevant receipts or invoices). Please keep your receipts in a safe place so you can apply for the Sports Bursary in Lent term.

We will circulate another message in Lent, announcing when the applications are open, and the deadline (usually end of Lent term). For any further questions or queries, please contact the DCSA Sports Officers

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University Hardship Funds

All  graduate students (except MBA & EMBA) are eligible to apply for financial help from the Graduate Hardship Fund of the Student Registry. Further information can be found here.

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Language Learning Bursaries

The College offers bursaries towards the cost of non-English language courses essential to students’ research at the Cambridge University Language Centre. Please contact the Deanery Office

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Medical resources

Crane’s Charity supports students who are ill and who can demonstrate financial need. All applications have to be made through your College Tutor. Further details can be found here.

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Childcare & Childcare Bursary Scheme

The University Childcare Office provides helpful information for students with children.  They can advise on the University and College provision for student parents, as well as on financial issues, offer help with finding appropriate accommodation and health care as well as suggesting places to visit and activities for children in the area.

Visit the Childcare Office website for information about University Nurseries, University Holiday Play Scheme, Information Service for Student Parents, and Support with Childcare Costs.

Darwin takes part in the Central Childcare Bursary Scheme, assisting with childcare costs.  The awards are means-tested and depend on family income, expenditure and are only available to eligible EU and overseas students.  Details of how to make an application can be found on the Childcare Office website.

If you have any further questions about childcare as a student parent please contact the Deputy Dean at Darwin (Dr Simone Weyand,

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Visiting Members

Darwin welcomes applications from graduate students who are visiting Cambridge as part of their studies elsewhere, particularly overseas.

If you are interested in visiting membership of Darwin, please apply directly to the Dean, Dr Duncan Needham:

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