Higher education institutions are critical in the establishment and consolidation of open societies. The Higher Education Support Program is committed to strengthening universities in two chief ways: by mobilizing digital technologies to increase access to quality higher education in the Global South, and by widening access for refugees to quality higher education. (We do not provide individual scholarships or fellowships.)
Digital technologies are powerful tools that can help reduce inequality; under the wrong conditions, they can also exacerbate it. Technology’s impact on higher education is largely unrealized in those regions where it could be most transformative—in Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, where the population of young adults is growing fastest and current higher education systems are least able to keep up with demands for access and quality.
The Higher Education Support Program is committed to extending the benefits of digital education to the Global South by building human capacity at universities and exploring the issue of retention among low-income populations.
Higher Education for Refugees
In the past, access to higher education for refugees was not a policy priority as displacement was expected to be short term, and refugees often lacked the basic qualifications needed to gain entry to universities. These assumptions no longer hold. The refugee population is now larger than at any time since World War II and the average length of displacement is 17 years. In the case of Syrian refugees, one-quarter of university-aged students were enrolled in institutions of higher learning before the war. Higher education can provide a stable trajectory in the midst of uncertainty and a sense of self-reliance in a world of aid dependency.
The Higher Education Support Program is committed to increasing refugee access to existing university systems and supporting institutions creating innovative higher education programs in direct response to the refugee crisis.