University students from Greece can hope for a better tomorrow, thanks to a $1 million donation to York University from the Stavros Niarchos Foundation. This generous gift will support exchange students from Greek universities pursuing studies at York U.
“With the Foundation’s support to study in Canada, young students from Greek universities will have an opportunity to dream, to help make dreams become reality, and to hope for a better tomorrow,” says Andreas Dracopoulos, co-president of the foundation’s board of directors.
The gift comes at a crucial time, with Greece in the midst of a crippling socioeconomic crisis, making its impact even greater. It falls in line with the Foundation’s current $130 million initiative to provide assistance against the severe effects of the country’s crisis.
The donation celebrates 70 years of Canada-Greece diplomatic relations and was facilitated by Canada’s Ambassador to Greece, Robert Peck. The donation will be formally announced June 7 at the Toronto-based Hellenic Heritage Foundation’s 17th Annual Gala.
“The Stavros Niarchos Foundation’s generous gift builds on substantial support from Toronto’s Hellenic community, and enables us to increase international opportunities for students by facilitating student exchanges with partner institutions in Greece,” says Dean Martin Singer of the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, which attracts thousands of international students to York, including students from Greece.
York’s Hellenic Studies program offers courses in Greek language, as well as ancient and modern Greek history. Scholarships funded by York’s partners in the Greek community are available to students in the program. The program’s Hellenic Heritage Foundation Chair in Modern Greek History, Professor Anthanasios (Sakis) Gekas, recently spearheaded the Greek Canadian History Project along with PhD student Chris Grafos.
“We hope this new gift will attract bright young scholars from Greek universities and inspire others in the Greek community to invest in the work we are doing with York,” says George Raios, president of the Hellenic Heritage Foundation.