Equity Bank’s Scholarship program sends 33 more scholars to global Universities in 2016

By Jamhuri News Reporter

Equity Scholars receiving their awards. Photo: File/courtesy

Equity Group continues to impact communities with corporate social responsibility programs across the region.

Today, the company reported of 33 scholars in the 2016 class of the Equity Leaders Program (ELP) receiving admissions to study in top Global Universities during the Early Decisions application round. This number is expected to more than double when the regular admissions are released in March 2017. This brings the total number of ELP scholars studying or alumni in global universities to 362.

Equity Bank, which has operations in six African countries and is ranked as the biggest bank in number of customers in Africa, provides infrastructure of delivery to the Equity Leaders Program (ELP).

The internship program selects the most academically gifted secondary school graduates from across Kenya and develops them into world-class leaders to transform society. Wings to Fly scholars who also score an A in K.C.S.E. also qualify to join ELP. The program aims at empowering young academically gifted scholars by supporting their access to education in public universities in Kenya and around the globe.

Universities that have offered scholarships to the top performing students this year are spread across the USA, South Africa, Germany and Mauritius. They include Amherst College, Brown University, Cornell University, Duke University, Princeton University, University of Cape Town, University of Pretoria, among others.

Among the universities with the highest number of ELP scholars include Harvard, Yale, Duke, University of Pennsylvania, University of Toronto in Canada and South Africa’s Africa Leadership Academy.

With Kenya government having streamlined Examination process with the introduction of strict rules ensuring no cheating or leakage is perpetrated, more admissions to global universities may be witnessed in the future.

“We are very proud of our ELP scholars who are increasingly demonstrating capability to compete for the most competitive positions in some of the top universities globally. In Early Decision application, scholars submit an application to only one university. This year, 98 ELP scholars attempted the early decision application translating to 34% admission rate as compared to last years’ 20%. This shows how our Kenyan children are academically competitive on the global scale,” said Dr. Mwangi, the Executive Chairman of Equity Group Foundation that implements ELP on behalf of Equity Bank.

Of the 33 admissions, 18 are alumni of the Wings to Fly program which is ran by Equity Group Foundation with support from partners. This brings the total number of Wings to Fly scholars who have transited to global universities to 32.

In Kenya, the universities with the highest number of scholars include; University of Nairobi, Kenyatta University, Moi University, Jomo Kenyatta University of Science and Technology and Egerton University. Among the most popular courses include; Business and Economics,Pure and Applied Sciences, Engineering and Architecture, Health Sciences, Arts and Social Sciences

Dr Mwangi further added; “while it was expected that best performing students would ordinarily come from national schools, we are seeing a trend where scholars joining ELP are distributed across national, county and district schools. This performance should serve to encourage students from all secondary schools in Kenya that no matter which school they attend, they can achieve their dreams if they focus, are determined and aim high.”

To date, ELP has benefited 4,490 scholars who are studying both locally and abroad or alumni. Of these, 2,057 are Wings to Fly scholars who have successfully transited to the university.

“The objective is to develop a generation of servant leaders who will think globally; are inspired to fight poverty in the African continent; embrace sustainable development; improve living standards and coexist peacefully as a people while being fully committed to giving back to society.”, Dr. Mwangi added.

ELP scholars have distinguished themselves as mentors and role models to secondary school students when they inspire and encourage students to aim at academic excellence. The scholars return to Kenya from their universities abroad during their summer holidays to team up with their colleagues in local universities and spend their time mentoring the incoming ELP scholars on how to apply for college admissions, as well as preparing them for life in the university and abroad in global universities.

-By Jamhuri News Reporter