Gaza scholarship

first_imgA meeting was held at Jesus College this week to solidify plans for a scholarship for students from the Gaza strip in Palestine.The College plans to raise funding for  a scholarship which would enable one student a year from the Islamic University in Gaza to study at Oxford.The Gazan university was partially destroyed in attacks near the end of the 2008-2009 Gaza War. Science, engineering, and medical facilities were the worst affected.At the time, Oxford’s Senior Proctor declared that “efforts to attract endowments to fund scholarships at Oxford for the most academically talented Palestinian students, to help lessen some of the obstacles to education that now prevail, would be welcome.”A similar scholarship to was set up in 2009 at St. Edmund Hall, and there is now a Palestinian scholar reading Engineering.Last term students at Jesus sought to emulate Teddy Hall. Motions were passed in both the JCR and MCR to provide the scholarship fund.Student Emily Dreyfus set up the Jesus College Scholarship Committee, which is working to find sources for funding the leftover expenses and also speaking to tutors in the pertinent fields for the purposes of the scholarship.A portion of the scholarship is funded by members of the JCR and MCR at £5 per student per term and a charitable foundation, and the rest funded through a fees waiver.“There was some opposition from the members of the Common Rooms,” said Dreyfus. “Most of it involved questions of, ‘Why Gaza?’”In response, last Thursday a discussion was held at Jesus where speakers delivered presentations on the situation in Gaza was and a Q&A session was held to answer any questions concerning the scholarship.Attendees included Dr. Swee Ang, co-founder of Medical Aid for Palestinians, as well as Dr. Karma Nabulsi, University Lecturer in International Relations and Fellow in Politics at St. Edmund Hall.Ang shared a slideshow presentation of her time spent working for Red Crescent after the 1982 invasion of Lebanon, and her subsequent visits during the Gaza War.Nabulsi spoke of her personal history in Palestine and her current involvement with the organisers of the scholarship at Jesus.She expressed her hope that the initiatives to fund these types of scholarships occur in “one JCR after another so that it becomes institutionalised.”Tracing the success of the push for these scholarships back to the occupation of the Clarendon building in January 2009, Nabulsi said, “The students who occupied the libraries made simple demands. They demanded we make connections.”last_img

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