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AUC Receives $86 Million USAID Grant, Largest in University History, for Scholarships and Training

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) has awarded The American University in Cairo (AUC) $86 million for USAID Egyptian Pioneers, a new program that provides scholarships and training to Egyptian students with emphasis on sectors that can advance Egypt’s climate goals. Through a nine-year cooperative agreement, AUC will administer the program in coordination with the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, the Ministry of International Cooperation and private and public sector institutions. Prioritizing women’s empowerment, diversity, inclusion, and climate resilience, the USAID Egyptian Pioneers will build and develop the capacity of a cross-disciplinary network of public, private, and academic entities. The program includes:

  • Scholarships for at least 700 young Egyptians (50% women) from underserved communities to obtain undergraduate degrees in Egypt
  • Scholarships for at least 60 mid-career government professionals to obtain master’s degrees in the United States or Egypt
  • Scholarships for at least 50 mid-career government professionals to pursue postdoctoral studies in the United States
  • U.S.- and Egypt-based technical training for at least 280 mid-career Egyptian government professionals and at least 220 mid-career professionals from non-public entities

Accordingly, more than 500 Egyptian women will engage in leadership and professional training, undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships and study abroad programs in the United States.


AUC President Ahmad Dallal said: “Leading the USAID Egyptian Pioneers program is a great honor to AUC. We commit to extending our longstanding leadership and excellence in education, capacity development, and training to ensure the sustainable integration of the public, private, and academic sectors. Egyptian Pioneers will surely leave an enduring impact on Egyptian society, advancing Egypt’s economic development and progress toward its Vision 2030. We thank the U.S. Government and the Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research as we endeavor together on this partnership journey,”


USAID Deputy Mission Director Margaret Sancho stated: “Climate change is an enormous challenge for all people, all over the world. But we also know that women and girls bear a disproportionate burden of its impact. Despite this, women and girls are leading climate change solutions in their communities. That is why USAID’s Egyptian Pioneers program will include leadership and professional training, undergraduate and postgraduate scholarships, and study abroad programs in the United States for more than 500 Egyptian women.”

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Founded in 1919, The American University in Cairo (AUC) is a leading English-language, American-accredited institution of higher education and center of the intellectual, social, and cultural life of the Arab world. It is a vital bridge between East and West, linking Egypt and the region to the world through scholarly research, partnerships with academic and research institutions and study abroad programs. 

The University offers 39 undergraduate, 52 master’s and two PhD programs rooted in a liberal arts education that encourages students to think critically and find creative solutions to conflicts and challenges facing both the region and the world. 

An independent, nonprofit, politically non-partisan, non-sectarian and equal opportunity institution, AUC is fully accredited in Egypt and the United States.