US Ambassador to Bangladesh Earl Miller congratulated the 40 newest graduates of the US State Department-funded English Access Microscholarship Programme during a virtual ceremony on Thursday (today, Feb 11).
Ambassador Miller praised the 20 young women and 20 young men for their hard work in completing the course during the pandemic and encouraged them to continue their studies to prepare for the future.
The English Access Microscholarship Program is a two-year interactive program that builds a foundation of English language, American culture, and leadership skills for 13-20-year-olds from economically disadvantaged backgrounds and helps them to become more competitive for higher education and employment opportunities.
Currently 132 students are enrolled in Access programs in Dhaka, Rajshahi, Sylhet, and Chattogram.
Two hundred additional students will start the program in 2021. Since the program began in 2004, more than 1,200 Bangladeshi students have successfully completed it.
Today’s graduating class joins 95,000 other Access program alumni in more than 85 countries around the world.
Thursday’s graduating cohort is the first group of Access students in South Asia to attend Access classes online – transitioning from in-person to online learning following the COVID-19 outbreak last year.
The Global Educators Initiative for Sustainable Transformation (GEIST) International Foundation, the Embassy’s implementing partner for this Access program, played an integral role in helping convert the interactive in-person course and materials to an online course.
The Access program is one of US Embassy Dhaka’s many initiatives to strengthen and expand people-to-people ties and educational linkages between the United States and Bangladesh, enhance the quality of education locally, and empower Bangladeshi youth through innovative learning opportunities.