Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Awards $450,000 to Schar School for New National Security Scholarships

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Originally published on October 19, 2020

The highly ranked security studies programs at the Schar School of Policy and Government at George Mason University have received a $450,000 gift from the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation. The programs will use $250,000 for scholarships for eligible master’s students entering the Schar School in Spring 2021.

The Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Scholarship is intended to develop and prepare future national security professionals and leaders who will study in one of the Schar School’s four security-oriented master’s programs: Master’s in International Security, Master’s in Biodefense, Master’s in Public Policy with an emphasis in National Security and Public Policy, and Master’s in Public Administration with a concentration in Emergency Management and Homeland Security.

The scholarships range from $3,000 to $30,000 and will be distributed over the first three semesters of the degree program.

“The Diana Davis Spencer Foundation gift makes it possible for many students to attend our high-ranked security studies programs and prepare for careers in intelligence and security policy,” said Schar School Dean Mark J. Rozell. “We are grateful for this new partnership that will advance our shared goal of educating and training future policy professionals in these fields.”

Distinguished Visiting Professor and former Director of the CIA and NSA Michael V. Hayden said of the gift, “There has never been a time when the national security threats facing our nation have been as diverse. The Schar School is growing to meet those challenges, be they from peer rivals, persistent terrorist threats, or the consequences of technological developments.

“This scholarship fund will enhance the Schar School’s already stellar reputation in attracting a strong and diverse pool of graduate student candidates who will serve as our next generation of hands-on, solutions-driven national security leaders,” added Hayden, the founder of the Michael V. Hayden Center for Intelligence, Policy, and International Security at the Schar School.

The Diana Davis Spencer Foundation’s mission is to “promote national security, entrepreneurship, and enhance quality of life by supporting education and global understanding.”

"We are delighted to support students to attend a top-tier policy and government school which prepares them to be outstanding professionals who will serve in the national security arena,” said foundation Chief Executive Officer Abby Spencer Moffat in announcing the award.

To be considered for the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Scholarship, applications for the eligible degrees must be received by the November 15 priority application deadline. Learn more about the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Scholarship and how to apply.

Former deputy director of the FBI Andrew McCabe, who is now a Distinguished Visiting Professor in the Schar School’s national security program, will greet prospective students during a virtual Master’s and Certificate Open House on November 12 at 6:30 p.m. EST. The open house is free to attend but registration is required.

The Schar School of Policy and Government is one of the 10 schools and colleges of George Mason University, with approximately 2,000 students, 90 full-time faculty members, and 23 degree and certificate programs offered on Mason’s campuses in Fairfax and Arlington, Va. Among the degree programs are government and international affairs, public policy, public administration, political science, international security, and international commerce and policy. The Schar School prepares undergraduate and graduate students to be leaders and managers who solve problems and advance the public good in all sectors and levels of government—in the United States and throughout the world.

For more, contact Communications Manager Buzz McClain at bmcclai2@gmu.edu.

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