Learning about India just became a little easier for students at the University of Washington, thanks to a recent gift of $100,000 to the Henry M. Jackson School of International Studies from longtime UW donors S. Rao and Usha Varanasi. Both are also UW alumni. The fund, to be known as the S. Rao and Usha Varanasi Endowed Scholarship for Studies of India in the Jackson School, will allow in the coming years greater opportunity for the study of India by students in any discipline, with a focus on support for undergraduates.
“We are fortunate to have grown up in two major democracies, India and the United States, but we feel that the understanding of strengths and similarities between our two beloved countries is often superficial,” said the Varanasis about the purpose of their gift. “Our endowment is an encouragement to students to learn about India from renowned teachers and experts because knowledge deepens empathy.”
The South Asia Center will administer the new scholarship, which will be open to students across campus with demonstrated interest in India through coursework, study abroad, language training, honors thesis research or other initiatives.