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Use of personal data

About the Schmidt Science Fellows

Schmidt Science Fellows is an initiative of The Rhodes Trust and Schmidt Futures.

The program is also supported by many of the world’s leading scientific thinkers and institutions, and aims to expand the horizons of the next generation of leaders and innovators in the natural sciences, engineering, mathematics, and computing. We enhance the ability of the world’s most promising new scientists to develop cutting-edge research, and equip them with the skills to serve as leaders in their fields and in society.

The Schmidt Science Fellows team are in the main employed by The Rhodes Trust, with some staff provided by Schmidt Futures. However, the Schmidt Futures team members do not have full access to the central Schmidt Science Fellows system. The Rhodes Trust, as data controller in respect of the Schmidt Science Fellows program, will determine how personal data is shared with, and access granted to, Schmidt Futures or its staff.

About the Rhodes Trust

Through its world-famous Oxford Scholarship program, the Rhodes Trust finds, supports and develops exceptional people who will be able to create real change in the world.

The Rhodes Trust holds personal records on Rhodes Scholars, current, past and prospective, and others who interact with us. Our principles are simple – we will be transparent about what data we are collecting about you, where that data comes from, how we use the information we hold about you, and the choices you can make.

The overarching purpose of collecting and processing your data is to provide you with the best possible experience of being a Scholar, supporter, or other contact of the Rhodes Trust. It also enables us to ensure that any approaches we make to you are respectful, professional, and relevant to you based on your reasonable expectations.

The Rhodes Trust has made the following privacy statements available to specific members of its community:

Privacy Policy – Rhodes Scholarship Applicants

Covering the personal data provided during the process of applying for a Rhodes Scholarship – for both submitted and in progress applications

Privacy Policy – Scholars Elect and Scholars in Residence

Covering Rhodes Scholars from the point at which they are selected for the Rhodes Scholarship up until they are no longer studying in Oxford.

Privacy Policy – Alumni, Donors, and Supporters

Covering Rhodes Scholars who are no longer in residence, along with any non-Scholars who are connected to The Rhodes Trust.

The information we collect

Via the website or email. You may choose to contact us through any of the “Contact” inquiry forms or email addresses on our site contact page, and in the process you may provide your name, email, organization or university, and other information that you choose to share with us. This might include the sending of any email alerts or updates you have requested.

Personal information may be required if users wish to sign up for email lists, submit inquiries, apply for employment, if applicable, apply for a program that we offer. We maintain this information in accordance with this privacy statement.

As part of any application. If you are invited to apply to become a Schmidt Science Fellow, you may choose to submit an application that contains your curriculum vitae (CV), reference letters, and personal statements.

The data collected through this application process may include certain categories of personal information such as contact information, demographic information, education history, employment history, and extracurricular activities. These application materials will be provided to boards that will review applications and select semi-finalists for face-to-face interviews.

The application materials, data that you share during the interviews, and other available sources (for example, to check references or CVs and run necessary and proportionate academic and background checks) may be used to consider your candidacy to become a Schmidt Science Fellow.

You will not be specifically required to provide any special category personal data (including ethnicity, religious or philosophical beliefs, sexual orientation or health data such as disability) unless and to the extent it is necessary for us to comply with legal obligations (for example in connection with equalities legislation), you manifestly made public such personal data or you have given your prior consent. For instance, if we are arranging catering for an event, we will request your consent to process your dietary requirements.

How we use your information

We use your information in order to:

  • respond to, or process, any requests or inquiries you initiate with us, through our website or otherwise;
  • consider your application.

If you become a Schmidt Science Fellow, the information you provide may also be used to:

  • facilitate your participation in the fellowship,
  • conduct research and analytics;
  • satisfy legal, regulatory, or contractual obligations; or
  • communicate with you about Schmidt Futures, the Trust, or the fellowship (including, for example, providing you with newsletters, articles, service alerts or announcements, event invitations, and other information about Schmidt Futures, the Trust, or the fellowship that we believe may be of interest to you).

Such uses will always be lawful and proportionate, whether in accordance with your express consent or for the performance of a contract to which you are party or for other lawful and compatible purposes where applicable. Please refer to the next section for more details in this respect.

If you are also a past, present or prospective Rhodes Scholar, or a donor or supporter, we may additionally use your information for the purposes set out in the above linked notices.

Our Legal Basis For Processing

For the purposes of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (where applicable to us), we process your data for the purposes described above on the basis of:

  • a contract to which you are party or in order to take steps prior to entering into a contract with you (including reviewing and fulfilling applications from those invited to apply to become Schmidt Science Fellows, or selecting Schmidt Science Fellows);
  • where so required by any applicable law or statutory authority;
  • our legitimate interests, in particular consisting in:
    • facilitating the administration of the Schmidt Science Fellows program;
    • managing and administering the selection process;
    • managing and administering internal disciplinary and appeals processes;
    • running background, CV, reference and biographical checks of applicants and candidates;
    • marketing, development and alumni activity including facilitating contacts, networking, and events of clear interest to those who interact with us (where it is lawful to do so and in accordance with your preferences and rights as set out below, including the right to object to direct marketing); and
    • conducting research and analytics.
  • your consent for:
    • certain specific direct marketing and fundraising purposes, in accordance with your preferences by whatever contact details have been provided to us; and/or
    • other one-off processing activities where no more appropriate legal basis is available.

Where consent has been given, it may be withdrawn at any time, without affecting the lawfulness of processing based on consent before its withdrawal.  

Who may receive your personal data

The principal third party with whom we are likely to share personal data is Schmidt Futures. Schmidt Futures will from time to time have a full-time staff member within the Schmidt Science Fellows team, and two representatives alongside The Rhodes Trust on the steering group that governs the Schmidt Science Fellows program (including the selection process). However, Schmidt Futures remains an independent data controller.

To the extent that Schmidt Futures may thereby process any of your personal data, it will only be for the same purposes of The Rhodes Trust through the Schmidt Science Fellows team set out below. For this reason we consider sharing personal data with such individuals within Schmidt Futures to be within our legitimate interests and the reasonable expectations of our data subjects.

We may, but only as necessary for the purposes identified above, need to pass on your information to other third parties, such as to assist in the organization of events, specifically our Global Meetings series, or making relevant connections between Rhodes Scholars, alumni, Schmidt Science Fellows and other persons of interest. Such third parties may from time to time include other academic institutions with whom we collaborate in the US and UK, not limited to departments or Colleges of the University of Oxford, and those who provide venues, catering or accommodation for such events.

Additionally, we publish the identity of those who are actually selected as Schmidt Science Fellows, including through our website.

Finally, on occasion we will need to use third parties to process your personal data on our behalf and upon our instructions (acting as a data processor), whether for the purposes of core systems such IT, mail, storage or HR and payroll services; for processing applications (using Embark Campus); or for other necessary outsourced activities such as background checks. This will always be subject to any contractual and security safeguards required under applicable law.