UWC Kenya

UWC Kenya, UWC (United World Colleges) is a global education movement that makes education a force to unite people, nations and cultures for peace and a sustainable future.

Central to the ethos of UWC is the belief that education can bring together young people from all backgrounds on the basis of their shared humanity, to engage with the possibility of social change through courageous action, personal example and selfless leadership. To achieve this, UWC schools and colleges all over the world deliver a challenging and transformational educational experience to a deliberately diverse group of young people, inspiring them to become agents of positive change in line with UWC’s corevalues

International and intercultural understanding

We are committed to building communities that are free from prejudice and intolerance, irrespective of people’s gender, socioeconomic, cultural, racial, religious or national backgrounds.

Celebration of difference

We consciously create supportive environments where differences are valued and recognised for the strength they bring to communities.

Personal responsibility and integrity

Personal responsibility, accountability and integrity are at the heart of the UWC experience. We expect the people we work with to behave in a similar way.

Compassion and service

Our actions and language communicate compassion and commitment to communities. We work at all levels – personally, locally, regionally, nationally – to make the world a better place.

Compassion and service

Our actions and language communicate compassion and commitment to communities. We work at all levels – personally, locally, regionally, nationally – to make the world a better place.

Mutual responsibility and respect

We believe in collaboration and mutual support, and recognise that respect underpins the smooth functioning of any encounter or team. People who work with our members find them dependable and respectful.

Respect for the environment

We recognise our interdependence with the environment and actively seek solutions that will contribute to a sustainable future. Our choices and actions demonstrate this commitment.

A sense of idealism

We inspire our members to believe that it is possible to make a difference and work with others who share that belief.

Personal challenge

We are committed to learning through doing. By taking the initiative and taking on challenges, we learn about ourselves and those around us, developing a sense of responsibility for others.

Action and personal example

We believe in the importance of acting on your beliefs and making your voice heard so your actions stand out.

Today, UWC has 17 schools and colleges on 4 continents, the majority of which focus exclusively on the 16-19 year old age group: a time when young people’s energy and idealism can be guided towards empathy, responsibility and lifelong action. These colleges teach the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma as their formal curriculum, a qualification that UWC played a major part in developing, while also emphasising the importance of experiential learning, community service and outdoor activities.

UWC college students are selected domestically, in 155 countries, through UWC’s unique national committee system. Selection is based on demonstrated promise and potential. In accordance with the UWC ethos that education should be independent of the student’s socioeconomic means, 70% of students in their IB Diploma years receive either full or partial financial assistance, based on their needs.

UWC also runs shorter educational programmes – conducted both at the campuses of its 17 schools and colleges and beyond – increasing the number of people who can have access to a UWC educational experience.

UWC fosters a lifelong commitment to social responsibility and, to date, it has inspired a worldwide network of more than 60,000 alumni, who believe it is possible to take action and make a difference locally, nationally and internationally.

Guiding Principles of UWC Schools and Colleges


UWC school’s help students discover the possibility of change. They learn that they can help to change the world through their courageous action, personal example and selfless leadership. UWC supports young people to reach their intellectual, moral, aesthetic, emotional, social, spiritual and physical potential.

All UWC schools and colleges share the UWC mission and values. But each operates differently and has a distinct identity based on local resources and opportunities.

The education UWC offers, is driven by seven principles inspired by renowned educationalist Kurt Hahn. They are underpinned by the pursuit of peace and justice, UWC’s founding aim. The principles reflect Hahn’s thoughts, experience gained from UWC’s over 50-year history and current educational thinking.

  1. Education should take place within a diverse college community. Students should be selected from regions and social groups that reflect the wide range of tensions among and between people.
  2. Education requires active promotion of intercultural understanding and the development of genuine concern for others, founded on shared life experiences, and cooperative and collaborative living. This includes talking about and engaging with global issues in the pursuit of peace.
  3. Physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle are integral to developing a balanced person. Unhealthy lifestyles limit human potential.
  4. Community interaction is at the heart of college/school life. This requires the full and active participation of all members of the school or college.
  5. Students should be able to take positive action around issues of sustainability on both an institutional and individual level.
  6. Students must have opportunities to practice personal initiative, self-discipline and responsibility, and to manage risk and embrace challenges. Where appropriate, these opportunities need to be supported by a reassuring adult presence.
  7. Recognition is given to the fact that individuals possess unique talents and abilities. Programs should exist in each school/college which help students fulfil their potential.



UWC Kenya National Committee P. O. Box 51916 – 00200 Nairobi, Kenya


For general inquiries: info@ke.uwc.org

For selections related emails: selections@ke.uwc.org




Only Kenyan citizens (including dual citizens) who reside and have studied in Kenya may apply through the UWC National Committee of Kenya. The selection process is highly competitive and rigorous! Make sure to follow all instructions in the application, and submit your application materials in on time.

Important information to consider before applying:

  • The UWC program is a two-year program based on the International Baccalaureate (I.B.) program. Students who complete the program successfully will thus graduate with an I.B. diploma. This is NOT a university program hence students will proceed to university either in their home country or study abroad. Typically most of our students go on to study at the most prestigious universities across the globe with full or partial academic scholarships.
  • The UWC National Committee of Kenya does not guarantee that all our applicants will receive scholarships to fund their study at the various colleges. Each year we receive offers from the colleges with funding levels from 0 – 100%. The committee will decide on the various placements based on merit and ability to cover a partial or unfunded place. Students who are awarded a full or partial scholarship should note that some offers do not cover airfare to and from their college and pocket money during the academic year. There are also other costs such as medical insurance, purchase of academic materials and travel during short holidays that will be covered by the student’s family.
  • Once an offer is made to a student, it is considered final. We are unable to amend the terms of the offer with regards to the location of the college or funding level. Students who accept a place with partial or no funding must commit to cover the costs of their studies. We will require a letter of commitment to be signed by the student and their parent(s) or guardian(s) for the same.

Who can apply?

Mandatory requirements:

  • Applicants must be Kenyan citizens (including dual citizens) who reside in Kenya and have completed their high school education in Kenya.
  • Applicants must be 18 years or younger by 1 September 2019.
  • Applicants who have previously applied to UWC, either via direct application to the colleges or via a national committee in another country, must provide this information to us at the time of application. Failure to do so will result in a cancelled application.
  • Applicants must communicate with their parent(s) of guardian(s) on their intention to apply to the UWC. We will require a signed consent form for this.

Selection Process

December 1, 2018- January 31, 2019UWC Kenya National Committee accepting applications
February 2019Interviews conducted in Nairobi
March 2019Candidates informed of successful nomination
May – August 2019Sign and return letters of commitment, Update vaccinations and make travel arrangements
Late August/Early September 2019Commence the UWC experience! For UWC Waterford Kamhlaba in Swaziland, school will begin in January 2020 due to the southern hemisphere school calendar

Selection criteria

Places in UWC are offered solely on overall merit, which includes potential, social and community awareness, and academic achievement. The most important criterion is all-round ability. Successful applicants are expected to have displayed some degree of community involvement and service, and their interests in all-round activities including those of a cultural nature will be taken into account in selecting candidates. Achievement, ability and aptitude, together with the ability to think and work independently, as well as social and cultural awareness are important qualities. Experience has shown that successful students are those who come with a clear awareness of the aims of the UWC movement and a personal commitment to contribute to them.

The UWC Candidate we are looking for will typically have the following qualities:

  • Intellectual curiosity  and motivation: A genuine urge to learn about the world around him/her and the ability to recognize the details and grasp the breadth of issues involved in any given topic and to analyse them thoroughly.
  • Active commitment: The ability to develop and readiness to reflect, question and confront one’s own values, to measure one’s behaviour within family and community against one’s values, and to act on their own belief’s and accordingly and responsibly.
  • Social Competence: The ability and readiness to make contact with other people, to interact respectfully with them, to work together with them,  in a team and to achieve solutions together.  It means the ability to express oneself adequately in different situations and address oneself adequately to others in language, gestures, and mimics.
  • Personal responsibility and integrity: Ability to look after him/herself physically and emotionally during the challenging and transforming experience a UWC offers, ‘Integrity’ means the personal motivation to adhere to UWC’s ethical principles also some humility and ability to listen and value another person’s opinion and experience.
  • Motivation for UWC: Passion, ability and serious incentive to actively promote the UWC values

UWC Kenya 2019 Application

UWC Kenya 2019 Application

Only Kenyan citizens (including dual citizens) who reside and have studied in Kenya may apply through the UWC National Committee of Kenya. The selection process is highly competitive and rigorous! Make sure to follow all instructions carefully and submit your application materials in on time.

A full application package consists of:

  1. Completed and signed UWC Kenya Application form found here
  2. Two letters of recommendation (one letter has to come from a teacher from your high school)
  3. Complete official transcripts for the last two years of high school
  4. KCSE results slip / IGSE final exam results (upon receipt of the same)
  5. Copy of birth certificate
  6. Signed consent form by parent(s) or guardian(s)

For your application to be considered complete, please submit all the above materials to  selections@ke.uwc.org   with the subject line “UWC Kenya 2019 Application” on or before 31st, January, 2019.