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AUW is offering full scholarships to high-potential students from India’s Dalit and minority communities

Posted on July 26, 2022

Written by AUW

Chattogram, Bangladesh, July 26, 2022 – Asian University for Women (AUW) has announced new scholarships for outstanding Indian women who are first in their family to attend university.  The scholarships will be fully funded from the general resources of the University, and while a student from any state in India (or, across the region) may apply for admission to AUW, these scholarships are specifically intended for high-potential students from the following states of India: (I) Bihar; (ii) Jharkhand; (iii) Orissa; and (iv) Assam.  AUW currently have more than 20 students from Assam, Jharkhand, Kashmir, Mizoram, Nagaland and Odisha.  A communication to this effect has already been transmitted to the Chief Secretaries of each of these states.  The University exercises a preferential option for members of the Dalit and other ethnic or religious minority communities.

It seeks students with high academic potential and an undeterred commitment to leadership and social change as exemplified by a demonstration of courage; outrage at injustice; and empathy.

Since its founding in 2008, AUW has offered close to 150 fully funded scholarships for Indian nationals covering all costs of room, board, tuition, travel, books and supplies and health care.

Many of the Indian students have gone on to make extraordinary achievements:

  • Tuba Kausar: Cash and Trade Processing Representative, Citi Bank, India
  • Azra Jawaid: Deputy Manager, Global Risk Oversight, Schneider Electric, India
  • Modabbara Jawaid: Consultant for Public Health, Care International, India
  • Sandra Unnikrishnan: Contract Associate, Accenture, India
  • Archana Somasekharan: ERM Sustainability and Foundation Manager, India
  • Azra Jawaid: received the Allana Foundation Scholarship that covered tuition fees for two years for an MA in Public Policy and Governance (2020-22) at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Hyderabad.
  • Athulya Purushotham: received the MESPOM scholarship for MS in Environmental Sciences Policy and Management (2021-23) at four different European Universities.
  • Savitri Kumari: ranked number one after completing the Jharkhand Civil Services exam

His Excellency High Commissioner Vikram Doraiswami the Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh has visited AUW’s campus in Chittagong several times.  In encouraging more Indian nationals to take advantage of the excellent educational opportunities offered at AUW, His Excellency High Commissioner Doraiswami commented:

The Asian University for Women is a unique and pioneering project that is as outstanding as it is inspiring. It is developed in the simple but effective concept of giving every deserving young woman a chance to break out of both the age-old shackles of patriarchy and social constraints as well as the restrictions of cost and access that are the limitations of our modern age. I have had the good fortune to see the transformative impact that this University has exercised upon so many brilliant and committed young women, in a brief period of around a decade, and I have no hesitation in saying that this is a project that deserves our fullest attention and support. For us in India, the project delivers on the very goals that our Government has itself adopted, of “beti bachao, beti padhao”–save a girl, educate a girl–that has been instrumental in sparking a remarkable evolution in our approach to empowerment of women.

I have no hesitation in inviting attention and consideration for this University, its faculty, and above all, its remarkable group of resilient and committed young women, who deserve the best that life can offer them.

AUW Vice Chancellor, Dr. Rubana Huq said:

AUW seeks to facilitate, expand and promote educational opportunities for women in Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa, and Assam. We hope that the outreach assistance from the Indian government will lead to recruitment of talented women who will later serve their communities with excellence and passion. 

AUW’s founder Kamal Ahmad said in announcing these scholarships:

AUW’s vision is to create a society that is not separated by religion, caste or creed.  We deplore political pogroms against the weakest of our societies and call upon all civilized elements in society to oppose such degradation of values so valiantly championed by Mahatma Gandhi, Rabindranath Tagore and Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and other leaders of integrity at the creation of our independence. By bringing young women of diverse backgrounds who have the courage to speak truth to power, AUW hopes to make its own small contribution in resisting the tyranny of prejudice and repression that is attempting to burn down our dreams of a different world.  It is only logical that these efforts are rooted in Chittagong for it was the “Free State of Bengal” that resisted even at the time of Partition the forced divide of our nations on the basis of religion instead of recognizing our common humanity.