U.S. Ambassador Maura Connelly congratulated scholars who received merit-based scholarships to Haigazian University upon their upcoming completion of their first semester in this unprecedented program in Lebanon. The 65 scholars are part of the United States Agency for International Development’s(USAID) University Student Assistance Program, which awards merit-based undergraduate scholarships to students from Lebanese public schools to attend Lebanon’s most prestigious universities.
USAID has devoted $27.5 million over the next several years to provide full merit-based scholarships to qualifying public high school graduates, many of whom are the first in their families to attend university. Scholarships cover tuition fees, books, living expenses, housing, and medical insurance.This academic year, 117 students were awarded merit-based scholarships to attend Haigazian University and the Lebanese American University (LAU), and more than half of the recipients are women. An additional 103 public school graduates will enroll at American University of Beirut and LAU in 2012 during the second phase of the program. Selectedscholars pursuean American-style education that promotes tolerance, gender and social equality, and challenges students to develop leadership skills, critical thinking, and initiative.This program is part of USAID continuous support of education in Lebanon over its 50 year history, supporting programs that have reached approximately 87,000 students.