Education opens the door to economic opportunity says Western Union

Job-focused education program from Western Union Foundation

Job-focused education program from Western Union Foundation

The Western Union Foundation has been accepting applications for its WU Scholars Program. This global scholarship program is focused on supporting students around the world who are pursuing a post-secondary education in the areas of science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM), business and entrepreneurship.

Access to job-focused education

“Education opens the door to economic opportunity,” says Jacqueline Molnar, Western Union Foundation Board Chair. “The Western Union Foundation is committed to helping people all over the world gain access to job-focused education, which in turn can translate into better careers and better pay.”

Students are selected as WU Scholars based on their accomplishments and personal goals related to the program’s three pillars: perseverance, aspiration, and community. Students receive USD $2,500 (or the local currency equivalent) as a contribution toward their tuition or school fees at the accredited post-secondary institution where they are enrolled. 

A brilliant WU Scholars Program

The WU Scholars Program is part of the Western Union Foundation’s mission to connect underserved populations to the global economy through education. The Foundation works to advance educational opportunities for women, youth, migrants and refugees through funding NGOs, thought leadership, employee donations and volunteerism. According to the UNESCO Global Education Monitoring Report, education increases earnings by roughly 10 percent per each additional year of schooling.

Education is a powerful tool

“We recognize that education is one of the most powerful tools we can help provide to people across the globe,” says Elizabeth Roscoe, Executive Director of the Western Union Foundation. “Last year’s WU Scholars class was spectacular, and we are very excited to see the caliber of applicants this year who aim to use their education to make a positive impact in their communities and beyond.”

Last year’s WU Scholar applicants were stellar, and we were truly inspired by their dreams:

“My dream is to rid the world of heavy metal pollution.”
- Chantel, studying environmental science, Jamaica

“My dream is to create affordable health care services.”
- Divine, studying biomedical science, Nigeria

“My dream is to design a business model that helps farmers.”
- Jasper, studying business accounting, Philippines

What makes a WU Scholar?

WU Scholars are students from across the globe, who want to build a better world and who share these three values:

Western Union education grants

Helping solve major global challenges

In 2017, the WU Scholars Program awarded 174 scholarships to post-secondary students in 65 countries. Sixty-eight percent of recipients were female, and the scholars represented more than 150 colleges and universities across the globe. Selected students from last year aim to help solve major global challenges, including building better infrastructure and improving access to technology.

As part of the WU Scholars program, the Western Union Foundation has pledged to award a minimum of 100 scholarships, along with Western Union Agent contributions. Western Union Agents and business partners can sponsor students in their region and receive a dollar-for-dollar contribution matched by the ;Western Union Foundation. Agent sponsors for the 2018 program include: GraceKennedy Financial Services, Vimenca, Aman Exchange, Community Financial Service Centers and Pay-O-Matic. In 2017, Agents contributed more than USD $200,000 to the WU Scholars program.


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Disclosure: Where Women Work researches and publishes insightful evidence about how its paid member organizations support women's equality.

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