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5 International Scholarships for Social Justice Students

Davis-Putter Scholarship Fund

This scholarship provides need-based grants for students living in the United States who are actively working for peace and social justice. The awards can be used for undergraduate and graduate programs as well as trade or technical programs, provided they are accredited. Over the long history of this award its recipients have fought for civil rights, peace in Vietnam, economic justice, anti-imperialist solidarity, and against racism, sexism, homophobia and other forms of discrimination.

The maximum award is $10,000 per year. Applicants must use the fund in the year it is awarded and can reapply if additional support is needed. Students must be living in the U.S. and strong preference is given to applicants who plan to work in the U.S. in social justice fields. U.S. citizenship is not required.

Rosa Luxemburg Stiftung

These global scholarships funds students with a strong commitment to social justice. Keeping with the ideals of political theorist and social philosopher Rosa Luxemburg, these awards aim to compensate for racial, gender, and other forms of discrimination in higher education. Preference is given to women, students from non-academic backgrounds, migrants, or those with a demonstrated social, physical, or economic need. Students in scientific and technical fields and graduates of technical colleges are especially encouraged to apply. These awards funds students of all backgrounds who seek to study in German and German language skills are required.

Several types of scholarships are offered:

  • Lux Like Studium – Supports students without an academic background to gain admission to university and complete their degree.
  • Study Scholarships – Available to students of all disciplines in German state-approved institutions, including those with a history of migration who are looking to gain permanent residency in Germany. Limited funding is available to students from other EU states.
  • PhD Scholarships – Grants for domestic and foreign PhD students from all disciplines (except medicine). This funding lasts for two years.
  • Scholarships for Foreigners – Grants for foreign students and PhD students who are studying in Germany.

In addition to funding, The Rosa-Luxemburg-Stiftung offers recipients political education events, workshops, symposia, and educational trips. They also offer political action training including conflict management, writing workshops, scientific seminars, and rhetorical training.

Rotary Peace Fellowship

Sponsored by the global service organization Rotary International, these advanced degree scholarships offer funding to pursue a Master’s Degree or Certificate to study peace, social justice, conflict resolution at Rotary Peace Centers around the world. Recipients go on to careers in government, NGOs, international organizations, and military and law enforcement.

Peace Center programs are offered at the following universities:

  • Duke University (United States) – Students can study in any Masters’-degree-granting department to which they are admitted. Their area of interest should be related to peace, conflict resolution, and social justice
  • University of Bradford (UK) – MA in International Studies, Peace Studies, and Conflict Resolution
  • Uppsala University (Sweden) – MA in Peace and Conflict Research
  • Chulalongkorn University (Thailand) – Professional Development Certificate program (3 months) in the Rotary Peace Center
  • International Christian University (Japan) – MA in Peace and Conflict Resolution
  • University of Queensland (Australia) – MA in International Studies with a focus on conflict resolution and social justice.

Applicants must be proficient in English and proficiency in a second language is strongly recommended. They must also demonstrate excellent leadership skills, a commitment to peace and social justice, and full-time work in the field. Interviews and sponsorship through the applicant’s local Rotary district is also required.

Zonata International Foundation – Young Women in Public Affairs Award

The Zonata International Foundation is a worldwide organization of executives and business professionals dedicated to advancing the status of women. Because governmental representation is an acute form of inequality, Zonata sponsors this scholarship to promote public service among young women. Since 1990, Zona has given 846 awards totaling over $800,000 USD to 724 young women from 56 countries. The program is open to women ages 16-19 with an active commitment to volunteerism, social justice, public service, and government or student leadership. Students apply through their local Zona clubs and then advance to regional and international levels of competition. District recipients receive $1,000 USD and 10 international recipients are awarded $4,000 USD.

American University Emerging Global Leader Scholarship

This scholarship from American University in Washington D.C. promotes educational access, opportunity, and diversity. It covers tuition and expenses for international students studying at American University who have a demonstrated commitment to positive civic change and social justice in their home country. The award is renewable for all four years of study for an undergraduate degree. Preference is given to international students who have overcome obstacles in their own life as well as those who come from diverse and underrepresented global and socioeconomic backgrounds.

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