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Uniting The World: 2019 Report of the Davis UWC Scholars Program

Johanna Fishbein, Head of University Advising, UWCSEA Dover
Pamela Kelly Wetzell, Head of University Advising, East Campus
26 March 2019

2019 annual report of the Davis UWC Scholars Program.


UWCSEA is proud to share the 2019 annual report of the Davis UWC Scholars Program, the world’s largest privately funded international scholarship program.

The Davis UWC Scholars program was established in 2000 by Shelby Davis, a longtime patron of UWC, and Philip Geier, former head of UWC USA and now Executive Director. Together, they hoped to advance international understanding even further by bringing UWC graduates from all 17 UWC schools and colleges to the United States to study at selected colleges and universities on full scholarships.

While providing access to educational opportunities undreamt of for many of the Davis UWC scholarship recipients, the second aim of the program is also directly in line with the UWC mission to promote interpersonal, international and intercultural understanding. Specifically, the program was founded on the assumption that the American institutions welcoming the scholarship recipients will become better communities for learning as a result of a more internationally diverse student body, reflective of the world in which their graduates will work and live.

We’re proud to highlight two of our UWCSEA alumni feature in the report, exemplifying the UWC mission in action by continuing to live UWC values through their activities both on campus and further afield through Davis Projects for Peace.

Mei Masuyama ’15 Dover

Claremont McKenna College ‘19

Mei helped to start Claremont Women in Business, a pre-professional student organization focused on supporting women in pursuit of careers in business. “We wanted a place where women can feel safe with whatever interests they have in business. We wanted to welcome everyone,” says Mei, who is aiming for a career in commercial real estate back home in Tokyo. The student group has grown to over 40 members. Mei, a board member, runs its Career Division. “Most of the work I do currently is talking to recruiters, hosting recruiting events, hosting workshops: how to write a resume, a cover letter, how to network and all that.

A four-year member of the women’s rugby team, Mei is also co-president of International-Connect, the college’s only international student organization. “Almost all our events and our resources are also available to domestic students,” she notes, “because we want to bridge the gap between international and domestic students. That’s one of our goals.”

Read Mei’s full story: Boosting Women toward Business Careers on page 31

Pranav Mohan ’15 East

University of Oklahoma ‘19

In his first year, Pranav started Money Spent Right a campaign promoting personal philanthropy. Pranav says, “It’s simple, choose a percentage to save from your salary and use it to change someone’s life.”

On campus, Pranav serves on the Dean’s Leadership Council for the College of Engineering, he’s a math tutor, VP of the Robotics Club, a member of the Indian Student Association, and a student assistant in the Davis UWC Scholars Program office. With a Davis Projects for Peace grant last summer, Pranav and two other OU students addressed menstruation, a topic often laden with taboos in Indian cultures, supplying 700 women with menstrual cups, an alternative that doesn’t present disposal issues and is more affordable long-term. They’ve since surveyed the women about how the cups have impacted their lives.

“We need more philanthropy — we need to provide more support to underprivileged people,” Pranav said. This value came to him from his grandmother’s frugality and his mother’s career in social work and was reinforced by the Davis scholarship. “The idea is not to give them answers. The idea is to focus on the technique, to get to the answers.”

Read Pranav’s full story: Why Wait to Make a Difference? on page 47

About the Davis UWC Scholars Program
In 2000 philanthropist Shelby Davis and Philip Geier launched a scholarship program that provided grants to selected American colleges and universities to support graduates from UWC schools and colleges. The program provides need-based scholarships for every UWC graduate who gains acceptance and matriculates, regardless of national origin or UWC attended.

A pilot program for 43 scholars at five inaugural schools - Colby College, College of the Atlantic, Middlebury College, Princeton University and Wellesley College - has since been expanded to include 9,428 students at 96 schools across the United States. A full list of partner institutions can be found here.

How the programme funding works

All UWC graduates who enrol in a Davis UWC Partner institution are named as Davis UWC Scholars, regardless of their financial need. For those students who demonstrate financial need when they apply to college, Davis UWC Partner institutions pledge to meet each student’s full level of need if they are admitted. 

The level of financial support provided to students by each university is based on the student’s assessed need, at the time of application. Financial aid is only given to those students who could not otherwise afford the cost of attendance. If a student is granted financial aid, the university receives US$10,000 or US$20,000 from the Davis UWC Scholar Program and contributes the rest of the funding required (if any) from their own financial aid budget.

To date, 15% of the total scholarships awarded through the program have been to UWCSEA graduates - 465 students.