Egypt - Since 1978, the US has invested over $1.7bn (EGP 32.5bn) to support education in Egypt by building over 2,000 schools and training thousands of Egyptian teachers, US Chargé d’Affaires Daniel Rubinstein said on Monday.

He added that to date, the US has provided over $350m in scholarships and exchange funding to more than 23,000 Egyptian and American students and mid-career professionals.

Rubinstein’s remarks came at a graduation ceremony held at Cairo University in honour of 157 Egyptian undergraduate students, each of whom received full scholarships through the USAID’s Local Scholarship programme to attend one of five partner universities in Egypt.

Valued at $39m, the USAID’s Local Scholarship programme awards full university scholarships to talented public high school students from underserved communities in Egypt.

To date, this programme has awarded scholarships to 673 students and produced 400 university graduates and is part of USAID’s broader scholarship programme in Egypt, which is the largest US government scholarship programme in the world.

Speaking at the ceremony, Rubinstein said: “This generation is growing up in an era of unprecedented change happening at an astounding rate. These students face technological advancements, economic and social transformations, and the ever-present challenge of climate change. This is why the US government — working with the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research and our partner universities — provided funding through AMIDEAST to position these scholars to embrace and tackle these challenges and opportunities.”

USAID’s Local Scholarship programme is one of several programmes currently offered in Egypt and awards full scholarships to attend Ain Shams University, Assiut University, Alexandria University, Cairo University, and Mansoura University.

In addition to scholarship funds, participants receive career counselling, English language training, access to internships and community service projects, leadership training, and the option to participate in study abroad programmes in the US.

Moreover, students with disabilities receive specialised support, such as accessible computer equipment and academic resources through disability service centres that the programme established in the five partner universities.

The programme also works with the private sector to connect students with jobs and internships. Additionally, more than 260 students have studied in the US, and more than 600 have completed internships with Egyptian public and private sector firms through the programme.

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