Imperial College London

£5M gift enables medics to combine clinical training and academic research


Medical research at Imperial College London

A gift to Imperial's Faculty of Medicine will enable talented medicine graduates to take part in a prestigious clinical-academic training programme.

The generous donation comes from the Hong Kong-based Lees Charitable Foundation, which is chaired by alumnus Dr Richard Lee (Chemical Engineering 1960, PhD 1964). The Foundation’s gift will create The Lee Family – Faculty of Medicine Scholarships, an endowed scholarship programme offering one full fellowship every two years, in perpetuity. The first awards will be made in the 2018–19 academic year.

The mix of skills that doctors will gain through the Lee Family – Faculty of Medicine Scholarships will pave the way for them to make the very highest contribution to medicine.

– Professor Gavin Screaton

Dean of the Faculty of Medicine

Imperial’s clinical-academic programme provides opportunities for doctors to do a three-year PhD as part of their vocational training, giving them valuable research experience that can be linked to their clinical discipline. By providing financial support to exceptional graduates, The Lee Family – Faculty of Medicine Scholarships will allow more junior doctors to take up this opportunity.

Completing a PhD not only opens up new career paths to individual doctors, but has wider social impact too. Understanding both the scientific characteristics of a disease and the everyday problems patients face enables academic-clinicians to bring a holistic perspective to the study of disease and the development of effective treatment plans. This potential for impact has made clinical-academic training a fundraising priority for The Faculty of Medicine.

Professor Gavin Screaton, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, said: “Doctors who feel at home in the lab as well as the clinic play a vital role in translating scientific breakthroughs for patient benefit. The mix of skills that doctors will gain through the Lee Family – Faculty of Medicine Scholarships will pave the way for them to make the very highest contribution to medicine. We offer our deepest thanks to the Lees Charitable Foundation for its support.”

Dr Richard Lee

Dr Richard Lee at Imperial's Asia Convocation 2007. Dr Lee received an honorary degree for outstanding achievements in business and exceptional service to the College.

The Lee Family has a long-standing connection to Imperial, and several generations of the family have studied at the College since the 1950s. Over the past 15 years the Lees Charitable Foundation has supported students and research at Imperial, donating to the Antimicrobial Resistance Collaborative and establishing the Lee Family Scholarship, which offers two fully funded PhD opportunities each year. With the creation of the endowed Lee Family – Faculty of Medicine Scholarships programme, the Foundation is building on an illustrious legacy of philanthropy and extending the impact of its support for generations to come. 

Sarah Porter Waterbury, Vice President for Advancement at Imperial said: “The Lees Charitable Foundation’s outstanding generosity will be felt by many people over many years – from the talented doctors who build their careers at Imperial, to the patients they go on to treat in the future. We are so very grateful for the Foundation’s meaningful support.”

Reid Alan Ching, Director of Global Development said: “Getting to know Dr Richard Lee and his family, and seeing the impact of their philanthropy, has been truly remarkable. The relationship that has developed between the family and the College is something we take great pride in, and it shows what can be achieved when we work closely with our alumni and friends. We look forward to continuing our partnership with the Lee family in the future.”


Mia Roberts

Mia Roberts

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