$1 million for 100 years

By Kristin Riegel

As Kathryn Wasserman Davis turns 100 years old, her goal is to give away one million dollars of her wealth.
Davis, a life-long philanthropist and internationalist, is committing her money for college students to complete grassroots peace projects over the summer of 2007.

The initiative, called “100 Projects for Peace,” is being offered on 76 campuses throughout the United States and will distribute 100 grants of $10,000 each. Grants are available to students of all ages and nationalities who attend colleges that participate in the Davis United World Scholars program. The Davis program helps cover tuition and other expenses for graduates of United World College (UWC) campuses who gain admission to one of a select group of colleges in the United States, including Macalester.

A substantial portion of Macalester’s international students are UWC graduates.

“This initiative is the perfect fit for Macalester students,” said Karin Trail-Johnson,
Associate Dean of the Institute for Global Citizenship. “It involves community betterment and justice, great ideas and entrepreneurship. It is a good exercise for people who are willing to act on their passions.”

There are few guidelines for the project and no established definition of what a project for peace looks like or entails.

“[Davis UWC Scholars staff] have encouraged us not to set many boundaries,” Trail-Johnson said. “The project is very open-ended and intentionally so.”

Although there are few constraints on the scope of the projects, Trail-Johnson said that every project needs to have tangible goals and outcomes. Each project should be practical and easily implemented. Financial and time restraints should also be taken into consideration.

Students are encouraged to apply for other sources of funding if their project requires a budget of more than $10,000.

All proposals for the project are due to Trail-Johnson by January 15. A yet-to-be-formed committee of Macalester faculty, students, and staff will review the proposals. The top three proposals will then be forwarded to the Davis UWC Scholars Office. The Davis UWC Committee will select the project finalists by mid-March.

“The intention is to give one scholarship to each of the 76 colleges, assuming each has a suitable candidate,” Trail-Johnson said.

Upon completion of their projects, finalists are required to report on the outcomes, achievements, and failures of the project. These reports will then be compiled and presented to Davis and her family.