The Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust funds the Thatcher Scholarship Programme at Somerville College.
Jessica Mannix is the Director of the MTST, responsible for overseeing the financial aspects of the Trust and ensures that the objects of the charity are met. She works closely with the Director of the Thatcher Scholarship Programme, the Principal, Development Director, Trustees and Patrons in the execution of her role.
As Programme Director of the MTST, Dr Claire Cockroft is responsible for mentoring and supporting the Thatcher Scholars and for publicising and evaluating the Thatcher Scholarship Programme. Claire also devises, adapts and oversees the Development Programme, which is open to all students of Somerville.
Jessica MannixDirector, Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust and Campaign Director
As Director for the Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust, Jessica oversees the financial aspects of the Trust and ensures that the objects of the charity are met. She works closely with the Director of the Thatcher Scholarship Programme, the Principal, Development Director, Trustees and Patrons in the execution of her role.
As we enter a new phase of fundraising to meet the College’s five-year strategy, Jessica has taken on the role of Campaign Director, working closely with the Development Director and Principal on the fundraising strategy, developing campaign messages, setting goals and developing the projects and tools that will allow the team to achieve the ambitious targets.
Claire CockroftProgramme Director, Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust
As Programme Director of the MTST, Claire is responsible for mentoring and supporting the Thatcher Scholars and for publicising and evaluating the Thatcher Scholarship Programme. Claire also devises, adapts and oversees the Development Programme, which is open to all students of Somerville.
Claire read Biochemistry at Somerville before gaining a PhD in Plant Molecular Biology from the University of Cambridge. During her Post-Doc in Cambridge, she was awarded a Media Fellowship, working with Tim Radford at The Guardian and subsequently as a freelance science writer. After deciding to hang up her lab coat in 2001, Claire pioneered a cross-disciplinary Master’s Programme in Bioscience Enterprise at Cambridge in partnership with MIT, aimed at bio-entrepreneurs and future leaders of the life science sector.
In 2005, Claire joined the Babraham Institute – a biomedical research organisation in Cambridge – where she was responsible for corporate communications, media liaison, public engagement and knowledge exchange and undertook PR for the campus, home to over 40 life science companies. She established a successful Science & Society Programme delivering novel science enrichment activities for schools, and summer research opportunities to inspire young people about science and STEM careers. During this time, Claire was a Graduate Tutor at Newnham College, Cambridge providing pastoral support and mentoring for a growing graduate community.
Claire is a trustee of STEM Team East, an educational charity that enriches science in schools, and has received awards for work with schools. She joined the Board of the biomedical charity Understanding Animals in Research in 2016 and is a member of the BioIndustry Associations’ Communications Advisory Committee. After joining the Centre for Personalised Medicine in Oxford during its start-up phase in 2013, Claire now offers consultancy in science communication and public engagement. She is a fellow of the Society of Biology, the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust and in 2012 was selected as a fellow of the British-American Project – a transatlantic leadership network from a broad spectrum of occupations and backgrounds.
Sara KalimFellow and Director of Development
Sara Kalim read Classics at Somerville from 1990-94. She then spent 14 years in the media, working as Head of Development for two major television production companies. Her work included developing access and ideas, and fundraising for documentaries and current affairs programming.
Sara has most recently worked for the University of Oxford for three years at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism, Department of Politics and International Relations, where she held responsibility for financial and strategic planning, and played an instrumental role in securing journalism scholarships from a variety of funding sources.
As Director of Development, Sara oversees Somerville’s fundraising strategy and development, is responsible for fundraising campaigns (including for the Margaret Thatcher Scholarship Trust and the Oxford India Centre), and heads up the Development Team. She is also a member of the College’s Management Team.
Sara has a long-standing family connection to India, with family coming from Patna, Bihar. She also studied at Somerville making her the perfect advocate to drive the further development of the Centre. Sara’s focus is on fundraising and profile-raising working with philanthropists and corporate partners.
If you are interested in making a gift, or are thinking about leaving a legacy, please do not hesitate to get in touch.