Philanthropy News

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International Peace Scholarship (IPS)

P.E.O. International Peace Scholarship Fund (IPS) was established in 1949 to provide scholarships for international women students to pursue graduate study in the United States and Canada.  Listed below is a timetable of the history of IPS.

A Brief History of the IPS Fund

1919 At Convention of Supreme Chapter in Denver, Colorado, Franc Roads Elliot introduces a peace resolution stating "We P.E.O. women would join hands in any movement looking toward the abolishment of war."

1942 P.E.O.’s United Victory Fund is created for the Red Cross during World War II.

1943 A four-member committee is appointed to study financially assisting foreign students in the form of a P.E.O. project.

1945-47 At the Convention of Supreme Chapter, Emily Baldwin recommends that the existing Education Fund include loans to foreign students for study in the U.S. and Canada and that foreign students at Cottey be considered for Cottey Scholarships. Three loans are awarded to foreign women – one from China, one from Yugoslavia and a Japanese student from Hawaii. This is the advent of awards to International women from P.E.O.

1949 First international scholarships are awarded to Kristi Jaantilla of Finland and Margretta Alder of Switzerland using money from the P.E.O. Victory Fund, which later becomes IPS .

1950 Six scholarships are granted to foreign students.

1951 Cottey College welcomes its first IPS recipient, Emily Boumeester of The Netherlands. Scholarships are still awarded through the United Victory Fund.

1951-53 Number of awards granted increases to 50.

1951-54 International Scholarships are renamed International Peace Scholarships.

1959 At the Convention of Supreme Chapter, the International Peace Scholarships program is granted status as a project, and its name becomes the P.E.O. International Peace Scholarship Fund. The United Victory Fund is terminated.

1961 IPS reaches the same status as other projects when the Constitution is amended to provide for a board of trustees to oversee the fund.

1968 Designated awards are created, bringing P.E.O.s closer to the spirit of IPS.

1979 Paula "PJ" Jorgenson, W, Virginia designs and introduces the first IPS logo.

2001 Named International Peace Scholarship is created. This is a one-time scholarship given to a top student from gifts of individuals, chapters or collected contributions equaling the amount of an IPS scholarship. Cottey College graduates are allowed to apply for one additional IPS Scholarship during graduate study.

2005 International Peace Scholarship is increased to $8000 for international graduate students and $4000 for international Cottey students.

2007 A record amount given of $1,754,000 is awarded to 232 students, the sixth year in a row that awards totaled over one million dollars.

2008 Amount of award is increased to $10,000 for the award year 2009-2010. $500 is the new amount for sponsorship of a Designated Award student. New logo design introduced by International and banners distributed to each state/province/district for use as convention displays.

2009 60th Anniversary of IPS is celebrated with a commemorative booklet given out at Convention of International Chapter in San Diego.

2013 Designated Awards becomes the Partners in Peace Program. Cottey IPS scholarships are increased to $5000.

2015 To date, IPS has awarded $34,974,613 to 7217 women from around the world.

Oct 2015

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Educational Loan Fund (ELF)

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The ELF interest rate has been reduced from 3% to 2% simple interest with maximum loan amount of $12,000 for undergraduate students, $15,000 for master degree students and $20,000 for doctoral degree students…find a deserving applicant today!



Many chapters ask what the best way to find an ELF applicant is. The ELF board of trustees appreciates your inquiries and is thrilled that you are continuing or perhaps just starting your search for qualified applicants. Here are a few avenues to consider as you search for women that could really use a helping hand in completing their education.


• INVOLVE- Involve all members in your chapter by asking everyone to keep their eyes open to possible applicants. Remember this could include a chapter member, a daughter, granddaughter, or niece of a chapter member, etc. It could include a neighbor or a woman in your church. The possibilities are endless.


• LISTEN- Keep your ears open to the stories that friends, relatives, and acquaintances share about someone they know who might be struggling with finances to complete their education. The workplace is the perfect place to network about the opportunities available to qualified women to get assistance with their education.


• TALK- Talk about our Educational Loan Fund. Remember “It’s OK” to share about our philanthropies. People will be impressed and interested.


• CONTACT- Do you live in a community with a college, university, or technical school? Make contact and establish a relationship with a counselor or financial aid advisor. They could possibly introduce you to women who might be excellent candidates for an ELF loan. Remember; get to know your applicant well.


• FAMILIARIZE- Familiarize yourself with all ELF policies and procedures so that when you are asked for information about an ELF loan you will be able to give an accurate and complete description of our great loan.


• BRAINSTORM- Get together with your chapter ELF committee often and brainstorm about how your chapter will find applicants. Get your committee and your chapter enthused and focused on finding applicants.


• COMMUNICATE- Communicate with your chapter members regularly at chapter meetings about your progress on finding, interviewing and recommending qualified women.


• ASK- If you currently have an ELF recipient, ask her if she knows of other women who meet our requirements and need assistance. After all, an ELF loan recipient knows better than anyone about the benefits of applying for our great loan. Keep looking for and recommending the many women in need of assistance. The ELF board of trustees is looking forward to receiving your recommendations of qualified women for ELF loans.

Program for Continuing Education (PCE)

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PCE Eligibility Requirements

A woman is eligible for recommendation by a local chapter if she:

  • is a citizen or legal permanent resident of the United States or Canada;

  • is enrolled in a certification or degree program;

  • is living and studying in the United States or Canada for the entire course of study;

  • has had at least 24 consecutive months as a non-student sometime in her adult life;

  • is within 24 consecutive months of completing her educational program which, at the conclusion of, will lead to employment or job advancement.  will complete her program of education within 24 months after the beginning date of the term for which the grant is requested;


A woman is not eligible for grant consideration if she:

  • is requesting the grant for use in prerequisite courses needed to secure admission into another program of study;

  • is choosing immediate continuation of her education beyond the current program for which the grant is requested;

  • is enrolled in a doctoral degree program.


A chapter recommendation must be submitted no less than 10 weeks prior to the start date of the term for which the grant is requested, however, it cannot be accepted more than four months in advance of that date.

P.E.O.  STAR   Scholarship

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We hope each chapter is considering a student to recommend as an applicant for the P.E.O. STAR Scholarship this year.  A few points to note are listed below.  Remember, if you have more than one applicant, please share the name of one of the applicants with another chapter that perhaps has not found an applicant.  

* The chapter recommendation form and recommendation letter must be submitted online between September 1 and November 1 ONLY.

* The student/applicant’s portion of the online application must be submitted no later than 30 calendar days after the applicant has received a link with instructions to set up her online account.   The student/applicant’s portion of the online application includes the Student Profile, Student Activity Charts, original one-page essay, two reference letters, and an unofficial high school transcript (through the 11th grade/junior year).  The student/applicant receives the forms and instructions for all these in the link she is sent once a chapter has recommended her.  Canadian applicants must also include their Province Conversion Grading Scale.

* An official transcript is no longer required from applicants.  Applicants may submit an unofficial or an official transcript with their online application.  The transcript should be included in the online application rather than mailed.  

* The student/applicant must be 20 years of age or younger at the end of the calendar year in which she applies.

For additional information please read the P.E.O. STAR Scholarship Project Information Card, the P.E.O. STAR Scholarship Procedure and General Information, and the P.E.O. Project Fact Chart on the International Website.

P.E.O. Scholar Awards

Chapter P is excited to introduce you to Lily Anne Deng.

Lily Anne Deng, a M.D. candidate at the University of Alabama Medical School at Birmingham, is one of 100 doctoral students nationwide selected to receive a $15,000 Scholar Award from the P.E.O. Sisterhood. She was sponsored by Chapter P of Birmingham.

Her parents, Cathy and Z.T. Deng, live in Huntsville, Alabama. She attended the University of Alabama at Birmingham for a B.S. degree in Biomedical Engineering and graduated Summa Cum Laude with minors in Biology and Chemistry. She was invited into the BME Honors Program, receiving the Beckman Scholar Award and UAB Undergraduate School of Engineering Research Award, receiving the Engineering Dupuis Leadership Scholarship.

The P.E.O Scholar Awards (PSA) was established in 1991 to provide substantial merit-based awards for women of the United States and Canada who are pursuing a doctoral level degree at an accredited college or university.

Sarah Kezar is currently enrolled at Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine. She received her BS in Biomedical Engineering with a Concentration in Leadership from the University of Virginia in 2010 and her MS in Biomedical Engineering from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2014. She is uniquely qualified to pursue her interest in the concept of One Health which purports the intertwined nature of human, animal and environmental health.

Prior honors and scholarships include:

Outstanding First Professional Year Award (Auburn University Chapter of Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society, 2016)

The William E. and Bertha Carroll Endowed Scholarship (Auburn University College of Veterinary Medicine, 2016)

The Margaret McTyeire Krebs Scholarship (University of Virginia, 2010)

The Sherrie Winokur Bladen Memorial Scholarship (University of Virginia, 2009).

Submitted by Sandra Dean

April, 2017

Sarah Kezar

2017-2018 Scholar Award Recipient

Nominated by Chapter P, Alabama

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As you begin to identify women to nominate for the next cycle of P.E.O. Scholar Awards beginning August 20, 2018, please make sure that they meet the following criteria:

•    The nominee is on track to complete her doctoral level degree between April 2020 and August 2021.
•    If your nominee is in a Medical Scholars program working on a joint M.D. and Ph.D. (or similar dual-degree program, such as a Ph.D./D.V.M.), she must be scheduled to complete the entire program (both degrees) between April 2020 and August 2021.

Only students enrolled in an accredited U.S. or Canadian postsecondary institution are eligible for a P.E.O. Scholar Award. Study abroad is still permitted, provided the student is enrolled in a U.S. or Canadian institution.

Be sure to review the PSA Policies, Procedures, and General Information for more details.

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