PEPY began the this year’s Scholarship Program last May. We started in Kralanh with our Dream Class students, presenting to them an overview of the Scholarship Program, outlining the activities leading to the start of the school year and introducing the opportunities that await them. This is also the first year that PEPY extended the program to the district of Srei Snom. Roughly 40kms away from Kralanh, on the way to the northern Thai border is Srei Snam, another one of the districts of Siem Reap province that is facing enormous financial and educational related challenges. After years of working with Kralanh, PEPY have decided to step up and add a new community that is promising and will greatly benefit from their committed young people.
PEPY received a total of 132 applications from both districts that were narrowed down to the final 30 after a series of individual, family, neighbours and village chief interviews. The interviews were conducted individually over the course of one week. One of the most important things that we are looking for is the student and their family’s commitment to pursue and complete their university education. Students that have the passion of giving back to their communities for the results to trickle back down to their family, friends and neighbours and families that fully support their children’s hopes of good education and a rewarding career.
It is also the first time that the English Placement Exam was conducted. This exercise aims to properly place the potential scholarship students to their suitable level of skill and comprehension of the language as ESL students. In coordination with PEPY’s Learning Center, the scholarship students will attend ICT and English classes to sufficiently prepare them for university, the job market and life in the city of Siem Reap. Their Integration Week is scheduled for the last week of October. This activity is where the students get to meet each other and build close, lasting relationships as teammates and more importantly as friends.
Announcement of the new PEPY scholars for 2016, Promotion 5, was held last Monday, 10 October at Lycée Kralanh. The students, together with their parents and the school administration of Kralanh and Srei Snom High School, were there to discuss and show their commitment and support to PEPY and the Scholarship Program. The parents expressed their sincere thanks to all the donors and supporters that, through PEPY, made this program possible. PEPY is as excited to work and collaborate with the parents and the communities to ensure that the young people from their districts are empowered to improve the quality of their lives through education.
Although the turnout of 132 students is good, PEPY is still aiming to reach further into the heart of the two districts and spread the word in the community of this opportunity. We also know that with enough support from our donors and partners, we will be able to increase the number of scholarship students that we can take in every year. We are also looking forward to the time that we can reach out to the other districts surrounding Kralanh and make a difference one step at a time.