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Meet This Year’s Class of Holt Scholarship Students in Cambodia

Every year,  exceptional students in Cambodia attend college on scholarship through Holt’s university sponsorship program. Their scholarship includes full tuition, English classes and a $30 monthly stipend to help cover additional expenses. Most of the students come from rural impoverished communities. Most are the first in their families to attend college. As girls face greater educational hurdles due to a legacy of gender bias in Cambodia, most scholarship recipients are also young women.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the current scholarship students have mostly shifted to online study. But as Kosal Cheam, country director for Holt Cambodia, explains, “Compared to the situation with the younger children, it’s a bit better because they can [more easily] adapt to the technology to learn online.”

When the first COVID outbreak occurred in March 2020, the students returned to their home provinces and continued their studies online. As cases and quarantine measures eased, in May 2020, they returned to Phnom Penh for in-person classes. “But unfortunately, from the 20th of February [2021], there has been community outbreak and the schools closed again,” says Kosal.

The Holt Cambodia team continues to support the students remotely, meeting online and communicating with them via a group messenger app. One by one each month, students also visit the Holt Cambodia office to receive their monthly stipend for books, supplies and other basic needs.

View the slideshow above to read about some of our current Holt scholarship students and click here to read about a few recent graduates!

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