In response to the war in Ukraine, the Brandeis International Business School has launched a new $1 million scholarship called the “Peace Scholarship Fund.” The fund will grant a full scholarship for up to 10 graduate students to complete their education at IBS. The current plan is to award the first scholarships to graduate students this coming fall semester. 

The goal of the scholarship, according to their homepage, is to support students who were “displaced from and forced to leave their country due to violent conflict or persecution for reasons of race, religion, nationality, or membership of a particular social group or political opinion.”

Brian Messenger, Senior Associate Director of Communications at the Business School, commented on how IBS is working to find students in need of scholarships in an April 29 email to the Justice. He stated that since the announcement of the fund on April 7, the Admissions team at IBS has been in contact with many international partner organizations, including EducationUSA Ukraine and the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. Messenger said that IBS is also in contact with numerous organizations working to assist refugees from Ukraine. 

Two members of IBS’s Board of Advisors, Barbara Clark M.A. ’91, and Alan Hassenfeld H’20, board co-chair, have pledged to donate $250,000 each towards the establishment of the Peace Scholarship, according to a BrandeisNow article. Clark holds a master’s degree in international economics and finance from Brandeis, and Hassenfeld received an honorary degree from the University in 2020. The remainder of the scholarship money will be raised through matching funds, and the scholarship fund has stated on its homepage that additional donations are welcomed and appreciated.

Clark and Hassenfeld both discussed the establishment of the Peace Scholarship in the same BrandeisNow article, focusing on what propelled IBS to create the scholarship. 

Clark stated that providing students from all over the world with a foundational education for how to be “good global citizens” is a core value of IBS. Clark said in the article, “to live those values, we must act in times of crisis. The Peace Scholarship Fund will extend an extraordinary opportunity to those students who need it most and ensure we live up to Brandeis’ founding mission of repairing the world.” Hassenfeld spoke on similar lines, stating that to hold themselves up to their highest ideals, the University and IBS must do all they can to be a “beacon of hope in times of despair.”

University President Ron Liebowitz made a statement in the same article regarding the establishment of the Peace Scholarship Fund as well, explaining that the war in Ukraine has already driven more than four million people out of their country, and those in a position to help are required to do what they can. “Brandeis was founded by the American Jewish Community, many of whom had either fled Europe or lost whole families in World War II. Helping those who face similar threats to their lives is something we feel a strong obligation to do,” President Liebowitz said.