The meeting was attended by representatives of the coalition of Program Partners and this-year’s scholarship holders. The inaugural address was given by Professor Anna Giza-Poleszczuk, Vice-Rector for Development, University of Warsaw, who spoke about the social role of university and science in the contemporary world.
The Bridge Scholarships Program is an extensive scholarship system offering financial support to students for their 1st and subsequent years of university studies. It was initiated by the Polish-American Freedom Foundation in 2002. It’s main objective is to equal educational opportunities for apt young people from low-income families living in villages and small towns.
“Thanks to scholarships, young, apt people can meet their dreams and study at a university of their choice,” Radosław Jasiński, the Polish-American Freedom Foundation Program Director said. “According to 98% of scholarship holders, their material situation improved with the scholarship significantly or very significantly, and 90% of scholarship holders graduate with good or very good results.
The bridge scholarships are awarded to ambitious and apt high school leavers from villages and small towns, who start full-time studies at the public universities, performed well at school, come from low income families, and meet one out of the following four conditions: come from the family of former collective farm worker; or are finalists of one of the high school Olympiads; or come from a large family, a foster family or a children’s home, or have recommendation of a local NGO. The Bridge Scholarship for the 1st year of study amounts to PLN 5,000 and is paid in 10 monthly installments of PLN 500 each.
Those scholarship holders who perform well can get scholarships for the 2nd, 3rd and 4th year of studies, as well as scholarships for learning a foreign language, studying at a university abroad, studying at doctoral courses, or doing internships.
“I would like to thank all people and organizations involved in the Bridge Scholarships Program for support we have been obtaining from you. It is thanks to you that our bridge to academic and professional career gets more and more sumptuous, ready to carry out our dreams about better future for citizens of independent Poland, of the developing world. On behalf of all scholarship holders I wish to thank all those whose involvement has allowed school leavers of subsequent years to develop their skills and talents, get new experiences,” Karina Rejs, a scholarship holder, thanked the Program Partners.
The Bridge Scholarships Program is one of the biggest non-governmental scholarship programs in Poland. The current Partners are: the Polish-American Freedom Foundation, the National Bank of Poland, the Rural Development Foundation, the BGŻ BNP Paribas Foundation, and a coalition of some 90 local NGOs. For seventeen rounds of the program the Partners have disbursed PLN 110 million.
Since the beginning of the program, a total of over 22,700 scholarships have been awarded for the first and the following years of studies. The scholarships for the first year of studies were awarded to over 16,000 graduates of senior secondary schools.
The Program is managed by the Educational Enterprise Foundation.
The Program is implemented with the organizational assistance of the National Center of Support for Agriculture, Professor Bronisław Geremek’s Center, as well as the Unit for Social Innovation and Research “Shipyard”.
The media patrons of the program are: Rzeczpospolita daily, Forum Akademickie and Perspektywy.
For more information please contact:
Anna Nowak, Educational Enterprise Foundation, PR Specialist
tel.: (42) 632 59 91; (42) 631 95 58; mobile: 660 223 851