Gbowee Scholarship Program
The Gbowee Peace Foundation (GPFA) African Girls Leadership Institute program that provides full scholarships to women and girls - namely - the Gbowee Scholarship Program (GSP) has grown considerably since its' inception. GSP provides full scholarships to qualified women to attend colleges and universities within and outside of Liberia, with demonstrable needs for assistance to navigate the bureaucratic and financial hurdles that are often barriers to enrollment. GPFA continues its work with media outlets, local NGOs, high schools and government, and the West African Examination Council to identify qualified prospective students in a transparent process to provide fair access to scholarship opportunities.
Headquartered in Monrovia, Liberia on the West Coast of Africa, the Gbowee Scholarship Program places special emphasis on women and girls with the hope of developing new peace activists, and professional women leaders committed to peace. We have had challenges around getting enough students who can take advantage of scholarship programs and as such, are very involved in leadership programs like the "Moving Beyond the Classroom" project, that encourages students to think outside of the box and seek to self educate beyond regular school curriculum. This process they understand, will help them meet criterias set by the scholarship grantors. We also added projects like the Rivercess Afterschool Enrichment program, to ensure that students in rural areas continue to get supported through our GSP.
Our Intenational Partners are:
Ashesi University, Ghana
Established in 2002, AU has 505 men and women students, and is an accredited, independent university. AU offered twenty (20) scholarships for Liberian women to enroll this fall 2012. The scholarships include full tuition for four years, a free laptop, free meal plan, free accommodation on campus and transportation home during the summer months following their first year.
Eastern Mennonite University, United States
EMU is a private liberal arts university established in 1917. With funding from USAID, the Foundation provided four (4) women peace activists the opportunity to continue and advance their education at the Women’s Peace Leadership Academic Cohort Program. The program is a two-year graduate certificate program.
University of Leuven, Belgium
UL is offering two scholarships for Liberian women to earn their master’s degrees starting in 2013. GPFA seeks a partnership with Dutch airlines KLM to provide round-trip airfare. All expenses related to study at UL will be covered under the university’s Leymah Gbowee Fund for African Women.
University of Seville, Spain
Formed in 1505, US is considered one of Spain’s top universities. US is offering one scholarship for a Liberian woman to earn a master’s degree. In addition to full payment of tuition and housing, US will provide the recipient a grant of 6000€ ($7295USD) to cover international round-trip airfare, books, medical expenses, and a stipend starting fall 2013.
Vassar College, United States
Founded in 1861, Vassar is ranked among the top 25 liberal arts institutions in the United States. Vassar is providing a generous package of four years of full tuition, room and board, international travel and a stipend for books and supplies to two young women to be identified in collaboration with GPFA to enroll fall 2013.
University of Arkansas - Clinton School of Public Service, United States
University of Arkansas, our newest partner, is offering our students 1 scholarship to a 2 year Masters of Public Service degree program. This includes full tuition, housing and a stipend. GPFA is presently working to identify qualified Applicants for Fall 2013.
We are currently accepting commitments to provide scholarships for Liberian women to attend domestic colleges and universities, and establish partnerships with institutions to obtain scholarships. With the nearly $20,000USD raised at the inception of the Foundation's work from private Liberian citizens, we continue to work on placing women and girls at the University of Liberia, the Stella Maris Polytechnic, the African Methodist University, Starz College, amongst others. The Foundation’s collaborations and partnerships are broad and deep as it develops relationships with the Liberian community, academic institutions and global companies.
We look forward to continuing our work in 2013 and hope to triple our educational placement in schools at home and abroad.
 GPFA helps applicants throughout the entire application and admissions process to ensure that the time and expenses of obtaining necessary documents e.g. passports, visas, birth certificates, securing picture identification cards, submitting electronic documents, etc. are no longer prohibitive costs.
Education and leadership development of girls, youth and women are the core platforms of Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa.
Starz College is providing ten full scholarships to Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa—five scholarships for fall 2012 and five more in fall 2013. Our scholars will study the areas of Information Technology, the Starz Business & Technology Integration Program, Starz Career Module One to become Microsoft Certified System Engineers and Module Three to become Cisco Certified Systems Engineers.
Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa made public announcements about the scholarship opportunities and invited interested candidates to apply and interview at the Foundation. Rachel, Harriet, Sewon and Sayea successfully demonstrated their aptitude to meet the academic demands of Starz College. Our goal is to identify five candidates who meet the high standards of admission for Starz College.
Institutional partners like Starz College, Vassar College (US), KU Leuven (Belgium), Ashesi University College (Ghana), and Cairo University (Egypt) have full scholarships available to Liberians through Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa. Yet, the Foundation has found that even our best students have not been prepared to meet minimum standards of admission. This is why the Foundation is expanding its scholarship program to include primary and secondary school students. We cover tuition, pay for medical exams, assist with the application process, and provide everything from bags of rice to mattresses to sanitary napkins. Musu Konneh (pictured with father) and Elice Torpah are entering 8th and 4th grade respectively. Referred by the Women in Peace & Security Network (WIPSEN), we go to remote communities (see GPFA associate Rose in blue), and work with families to prepare their daughters for admission. Your support makes these efforts possible.
Starz College and Gbowee Peace Foundation Africa are proud partners of efforts to prepare Liberians for the current and future career opportunities available in Liberia.
Ma Hawa Ngaima is 18 years old, and is named after her late grandmother. As the first and only member of her family to attend a college or university, Ma Hawa is enrolled at the University of Liberia, one of the oldest public institutions of higher education in West Africa. Ma Hawa’s big cheeks and round eyes conceal a steely focus. She studies Biology & Chemistry at UL, and will use her education to treat children suffering from chronic diseases. Ma Hawa is from Lofa County. The Lofa County Development Agenda (LCDA) cited in its 2008-2012 report that about a quarter of women 15 years and older were literate (compared to half of men) and just 14 percent of females aged 12-17 were enrolled in secondary school (compared to 39 percent of males).
With her scholarship, Ma Hawa is determined to further her education to the master’s degree level because “I want to work for the interests of children.” With a last name that means “come back” in the Gbandi language, Ma Hawa intends to return to Lofa to use her education for the betterment of the community. Ma Hawa is grateful that “I don’t have to worry about school fees and transportation anymore. I am the most happiest child! I hope other girls are helped so that they too can tell that they have been cared for and not left behind; to make them feel important to society.”
Ma Hawa is currently putting her education to the test at an internship with a local clinic in Monrovia on a GPFA stipend.
There are curently 29 scholaship recipients representing 9 different Liberian counties.
Under AGLI, the Gbowee Scholarship Program (GSP) provides full scholarships to qualified women to attend colleges and universities within and outside of Liberia. GSP provides educational opportunities to women who require assistance to navigate the bureaucratic and financial hurdles that are often barriers to enrollment. The Foundation works with media outlets, local NGOs, high schools and government, and the West African Examination Council to identify qualified prospective students in a transparent process to provide fair access to scholarship opportunities.
Gbowee Scholarship Program places special emphasis on women from areas susceptible to conflict to develop new peace activists, and professional women leaders committed to peace. The Foundation is acutely aware that in order to preserve peace and ensure equitable allocation of economic, social and political development in regions of conflict, women need to be in key decision-making positions. Gbowee Scholarship Program works to secure the financial support women need to develop as leaders within the classroom and beyond. The current scholarship recipients include Gwendolyn Myers, Windor Dorko, Grace Jarsor, Vaiba Flomo, and Agatha Sandy (Easterm Mennonite University in the US); Ma Hawa Ngaima (University of Liberia); Ruth Nyanti, Wanita Kollie and Josehine Gekpelee (Cuttington University); Welma Elwu, Ramona Petersen and Patience Dobson (Mother Patern College of Health Sciences); and Sayea Glahn, Sewon Bidi, Harriet Luke, and Rachel Rambo (Starz College).
Originally, we submitted the names of Ruth Nyanti, Ramona Petersen and Patience Dobson to apply for a scholarship through the Eyptian Embassy to Liberia to enroll at Cairo University. Ruth, Ramona and Patience were the only three girls in Liberia to achieve a Division II score on the West African Examination Council (WAEC) exam in 2010 and 2011. The Egyptian Embassy offered four scholarships. Unfortunately, they were denied admission. This sad news only strengthens the Foundation's commitment to expand access to higher education for women, and to better prepare them for opportunities that will come. Ruth, Ramona and Patience will continue their education in Liberia with full scholarships from the Foundation.
Institutional Partnerships with GPFA formed in First Quarter 2012
Starz College, Liberia
Starz was founded in 2007 as the Starz Institute of Technology to provide IT Training, Networking, Software development and educational training/development for Liberians. In 2012, the Institute gained status as a college. GPFA is able to offer five scholarships for women enrolled fall 2012, and five more for students enrolling fall 2013.
Current Progress and Deadlines
GPFA announced the launch of the AGLI on 3 February 2012. We are currently accepting commitments to provide scholarships for Liberian women to attend domestic colleges and universities, and establish partnerships with institutions to obtain scholarships. At the Foundation’s launch, nearly $20,000USD was raised towards scholarships from Liberian private citizens. The Foundation’s collaborations and partnerships are broad and deep as it develops relationships with the Liberian community, academic institutions and global companies.
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