One of the biggest challenges to College students elsewhere in the developing world is economic constraint and the case is not different for Ethiopian higher education students. Many Universities devise different modalities to support economically disadvantaged students in order to make them focus on their studies. This effort, however, may not always be successful enough in reaching as many students in places where significant number of the student population is constrained by economic problems.
The College of Medicine and Health Sciences at the University of Gondar recently signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) with Major Zegeye Yemiru and W/ro Yeshi Asfaw Memorial Scholarship Fund. The sponsor of this scholarship grant is Mr. Abraham Zegeye, a business man and a philanthropist based in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA. The memorial scholarship is set up in memory of his late parents, Major Zegeye Yemiru and W/ro Yeshi Asfaw. Born and grown in Ethiopia, Mr. Abraham understands the challenges that Ethiopian College students might face and he has a great vision to support his fellow compatriots.
As per the agreement, Major Zegeye Yemiru and W/ro Yeshi Asfaw Memorial Scholarship Fund will transfer ETB 100,000.00 (One hundred thousand Ethiopian Birr) every year to the College and this will be used to support economically disadvantaged full time regular medicine and health science students at the College. This grant will be open for applicants in January and 40 students will be selected based on the agreed selection criteria. The benefactor stated that he has a plan to expand this scholarship in terms of improving the amount of the grant and in terms of incentivizing students who will score better grades.
This agreement was made possible through the communications from Pietro Toggia, a Professor of Criminal Justice at Kutztown University who introduced Abraham to Dr. Desalegne Mengesha while he visited Philadelphia for a public lecture and partnership meeting. Mr. Abraham has a plan visit the University of Gondar in 2014.
Contributed by: Desalegne Mengesha, Academic Vice President at UoG and a Fulbright Scholar at the Ohio State University. December 21/2013.