Media Center

Press Release


  May 17, 2007

The Organization of American States (OAS) has adopted a resolution to “permanently lift the pause in the awarding of OAS scholarships,” thus paving the way for students in the member states to pursue new opportunities for training and higher education.

In welcoming the resumption of the scholarship awards, OAS Assistant Secretary General Albert R. Ramdin said, “I am convinced the mechanisms which have been put in place—both institutionally as well as in terms of policy—will satisfy the needs of all member states in a manner that best serves the people of the Americas, particularly our youth population.”

The OAS program will provide approximately 100 full scholarships per year for students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees, as well as opportunities for some 1,000 students to take on-line training courses.

According to the Assistant Secretary General, OAS scholarships are especially important for the smaller economies of the Western Hemisphere as they not only benefit individual students, but also contribute to development by helping to build capacity on the ground in those countries.

“Lifting the pause will pave the way for a more robust scholarship and training program,” said Ambassador Ellsworth John of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, who introduced the resolution during a joint meeting Wednesday of the OAS Permanent Council and the Inter-American Council for Integral Development (CEPCIDI).

John, who chairs CEPCIDI, explained that the revamped system incorporates new mechanisms to facilitate a thorough review process for the awarding of graduate and undergraduate scholarships. Ambassador John identified several positive changes that had been made in the program, including the adoption of a new manual of procedures, rigorous financial controls, and systems for monitoring third-party performance.

“The future of our economies and the future of our democracies are closely linked to our ability to adequately educate this and future generations,” noted Assistant Secretary General Ramdin. “The OAS, through its scholarship and other programs, plays a critical role in shaping the future of this region.”

Reference: E-128/07