Columbia Global Now Accepting Applications for Columbia University Scholarships for Displaced Students

November 22, 2023

Columbia Global is now accepting applications for the Columbia University Scholarship for Displaced Students, in close partnership with participating Columbia schools. The scholarship provides accepted students with full tuition from the participating schools and support for non-tuition expenses from Columbia Global. The 2023-2024 application cycle is open to students pursuing master’s degrees at Columbia’s graduate schools. 

The United Nations Refugee Agency estimates that more than 110 million persons have been displaced worldwide – and the number is growing. Since its launch in 2019, the Columbia University Scholarship for Displaced Students has supported over 50 students from 25 countries studying at 16 Columbia schools and affiliates.

"We have a moral imperative to support young people fleeing persecution and violence,” said Wafaa El-Sadr, executive vice president for Columbia Global. “We are grateful for the support of the University and the many Columbia schools who are committed to this critical program.”

photo of Tetiana (Tanya) Kotelnykova

Scholarship recipient, Tetiana (Tanya) Kotelnykova, fled Ukraine in 2022 and completed a master’s degree in Human Rights Studies at Columbia’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. While at Columbia, she started a mentorship program to connect Columbia students and alumni with Ukrainian youth whose academic studies have been disrupted by the war. 

"My own difficulties and challenges have inspired me to help others," Tanya said. "I believe that young people who have suffered displacement need the opportunity to pursue their education."  

photo of Ronak Elias

Ronak Elias, an Iraqi Yazidi who fled persecution, said, "Amidst all the chaos and uncertainty of my life in Iraq, this scholarship was the only light at the end of the tunnel."

She is pursuing her undergraduate education at Columbia’s School of General Studies, studying computer science and psychology. 

The scholarship is designed to address the global displacement crisis by providing displaced students with the opportunity to pursue higher education at Columbia University, one of the leading educational institutions in the world. 

Learn more about eligibility requirements and how to apply.