Scholarships open amid map dispute

by Ana Ceballos

Two scholarships supporting students enrolled in the Jewish Studies Program at San Diego State were created in collaboration with the San Diego Chapter of Stand With Us, a pro-Israel group.

The scholarships, which support students with regular tuition and studying abroad expenses, were created after the group sent out an action alert regarding a map distributed during an Arabic 101 class at SDSU.

At the beginning of the semester, students were presented with a map of Arabic-speaking countries in the Middle East. The map excluded Israel from the territory and instead labeled it as Palestine. The map also excluded non-Arabic speaking countries such as Eritrea, Ethiopia and Chad.

“(SDSU’s Chief of Staff) Andrea Rollins got in contact with us and we spoke about turning this into a positive situation and talked about promoting truth in the classroom,” Regional Director for Stand With Us San Diego Nicole Bernstein said.

Regarding the scholarships, the university said it was not created to serve as an apology, but rather as part of the university’s strategic plan to “enhance the quality of our academic programs.”

The award amount of the scholarships is still unknown, as it is based on whom the donors will be.

Bernstein said her team has already notified people in the San Diego community about its search for donors.

SDSU is the first school to offer Stand With Us the chance to provide a scholarship.