Higher Education Scholarships

The DSMT-Dar Al Tifl Higher Education scholarship Programme funds higher education scholarships for former pupils of the school to study at Palestinian universities.

Between 2007 and 2018, the DSMT Higher Education Scholarship Programme has awarded eleven full and four partial scholarships (one semester rather than two each year), by competitive application, to able but disadvantaged girls.  The award covers the fees for a whole undergraduate course (usually 4 years). Terms of the scholarship include taking a full part in university life, doing some voluntary work if time allows, acting as role models for younger Dar Al Tifl pupils, and submitting a report to DSMT at the end of each year. Nine girls have now successfully graduated and six are still at university. Without scholarships these able and committed girls might otherwise have been unable to take advantage of a university education and the opportunities this offers.

See examples of Higher Education Reports and application Guidance Notes.

Higher Education 2020

In early 2019 the DSMT Board of Trustees decided the time was approaching to begin winding down the Trust after 15 years of successful operation. As Higher Education scholarships last for at least 4 years, no HE scholarship has been awarded since 2019.  All current HE scholarship students will of course continue to be supported to the end of their courses and the funds set aside for this will managed by Dar Al Tifl on our behalf in the usual way. Read more….

2020 has seen the same disruption to higher education in Palestine as has happened all over the world.   In March this year, all DSMT-funded HE girls found themselves back at their homes in Jerusalem or the West Bank for the rest of the academic year.  Several girls have been able to keep in regular touch with us and have passed on news of others.   All girls appear to have had some online teaching, all have had end of year assessment of some sort and Dar Al Tifl have now received their end of year grades.   You can read some of the girls’ stories below.

As of October 2020 universities are still closed because of a second wave of COVID-19 cases in Israel-Palestine and students are being taught online.

New graduates in 2019-20  

Congratulations to DSMT’s newest graduates.

leenLeen  – 2015 HE scholarship student (partial award)

Leen finished her Social Work with Psychology degree at Bethlehem University at the end of December 2019, taking an extra semester to complete her hours because she had changed her course after the first year. “Hello DSMT, thank you so much for your question I’m very good and I have got HONOR at the last semester, I will be graduating at the summer (12/6/2020)….”   January 2020

 “…We all are good thanks to god. Yes all of the universities and schools are now closed but I have finished from the last semester of fall 2019 so I don’t have any courses or exams and everything is going well, and I will graduate as it was planned.   Wish you too all the best and thank you…” April 2020

Israa – 2015 HE scholarship student

Israa graduated in summer 2020 from her five-year course in Architecture at An Najah University and now has a job in an architect’s office in Jerusalem. She feels she has achieved so much academically and culturally, and is much more self-confident,  “…I owe you a massive thanks that words cannot describe… I have to admit I could not have reached this position without your generous funding… Also I want to share a good news, I applied for a job and got accepted, so now I’m working in an architecture engineering office in Jerusalem …

Israa’s messages over the months form a vivid account of her experiences through her final COVID-disrupted semester. Click here to read her account.

In 2018, two full Higher Education Scholarships were awarded

Rawan – 2018 HE scholarship student

Rawan, a former DSMT school scholarship student, completed her second year at Birzeit University studying Computer Engineering in summer 2020.  An exceptional student, Rawan has found the disruption frustrating though she has managed to cover a lot of ground academically and to contribute to online sessions for local school children and new undergraduates. “My first semester of my second year was great, well, I have received an honor but this time with a new record, I got an average of 98.4% which was the highest among all engineering students. I felt really proud of myself … But COVD-19 has made our lives a mess, …For me I have completed my courses online, but with different grading policy, as my university as well as every student in it were not ready to start online education, so there were only: an emergency pass or incomplete assessments, I have passed all courses successfully and benefited as much as possible. There will be no honor list for this semester as many students who deserve it have had difficulties due to electricity or wifi connections…”June 2020

arwa-copyArwa – 2018 HE scholarship student

DSMT awarded two HE scholarships in 2018.  Arwa is studying Finance at Birzeit University. Like Rawan, her second semester teaching was all online, but she has successfully completed the assessments to progress to the next year. “Based on my abilities and future plans, I made this decision which goes better with my skills and goals.  I have done some charity work, like going to the hospital and introducing joy to cancer children…. I promise you more charity until there comes a day I do like your charity work with me”. Summer 2019

Narmeen – 2017 HE scholarship student

Narmeen successfully completed the third year of her course in Law at Birzeit University in summer 2020. Her end of year report gave a glimpse of the difficult year she has had, and her determination to succeed despite this.“…This year is honestly exceptional for everyone and it was not what we thought or planned, but we are hoping that this virus will come to an end and we’ll return to our normal life as before. …As for the second semester, at the beginning I participated in the “Tamayoz” program with the university. This is based on selecting students from all Palestinian universities and try to develop them by giving them economic and legal skills. But unfortunately, due to the virus the meetings were stopped. As for my courses at the university, we used Zoom app to educate, it was hard at the beginning because of the new method, but now it became easier… I also participated in the legal translation course in Ramallah, but I couldn’t complete all the meetings because of the closed ways in Jerusalem and I hope I can continue when they open the checkpoints…” August 2020

Haneen – 2017 HE scholarship student (partial award)

Haneen completed the third year of her Primary Education degree course in summer 2020.

“….We are keeping safe and well here, but my family facing some challenges related to the living conditions due to the lack of jobs caused by the coronavirus, but we are doing well and we thank God for the good health.” April 2020

“… It was a pleasant and sad year at the same time, because we took a half year at university with teachers and classmates in the usual way, and the other half was online from our home. …we did the exams online and it was done successfully.  The university administration decided to put an incomplete mark for the practical teaching training this semester, and to put in the mark when we can come to the school when it’s open, which has made our average low, more than it should be, although I got very good marks in the other subjects.   August 2020

nourNour architectureNour – 2016 HE scholarship student

“I have completed my 4th year of the 5-year journey of studying architectural engineering at An-Najah university. In the first semester we studied Urban Design, Concrete, Engineering Economy, Architectural Theory as well as Design and English Language… The design studio is the place I spend most of my time in, …We worked on a new skill in the field of historic preservation which is Building Restoration.  So I worked with a group of ten students on an old palace in the old city of Nablus on a three-phase project. The  process of learning was running normally until the first COVID 19 cases had been detected at a hotel in Bethlehem  on 5 March 2020. …The Palestinian government announced that all schools and universities in the West Bank should close… A week from this announcement, my university announced the we should continue our studies from homes and that we should attend classes at Zoom application. At first it wasn’t easy but in the end we got used to the new method of learning. We had to make more effort to successfully pass the term, and instead of attending three exams for each subject as usual, we had to attend a Quiz each week for every subject, with more homework and more presentations…Now I am doing practical training in an engineering office in Ramallah.”  From Nour’s Report, August 2020

Maram – 2016 HE scholarship student (partial award)

Maram was due to graduate in Physics with Education in summer 2020, but as she explains, the COVID restrictions interrupted her plans. “… According to my graduation I didn’t have the opportunity to finish this year because I have two courses, they are training at school and because of the virus schools are closed so according to that I have to wait till the first term to do them if schools are open.  I am done with all my theoretical courses. I hope you are good safe and a good health. I was late with my answer because my mom is infected with corona virus and all the house responsibility is on me.” Maram, July 2020