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Editor’s note: The video above was provided by the Obama Foundation.

SAVANNAH, Ga. — On Monday, former President Barack Obama, First Lady Michelle Obama and Airbnb co-founder and CEO Brian Chesky announced the Voyager Scholarship, the Obama-Chesky Scholarship for Public Service.

Funded by a $100 million personal contribution from Chesky to the Obama Foundation, the scholarship is expected to give 100 college students who will enter careers in public service, financial aid to help ease the load of college debt, travel experiences to expand their horizon and a network of mentors and leaders to assist them throughout their careers.  

“If we want this next generation of leaders to be able to do what they need to do, they have to meet each other. They have to know each other. They have to understand each other’s communities,” said President Obama in the announcement video. “You’re going to find young people from every corner of this country who are going to be future change-makers. There are leaders everywhere. We just have to find them.”

“We need a generation of leaders who are willing to cooperate and build bridges, but it’s hard to build a bridge if you haven’t seen the other side of the river,” said Chesky. “The Voyager Scholarship will broaden their horizons and give these young leaders tools and experiences that will shape their careers. There are young people across the country who have a passion for public service, but can’t pursue it because of their student loan debt. We want to help reduce that burden.” 

“Education is personal for me,” said former First Lady Michelle Obama, “I’ve met so many young people who are interested in public service, but they’re wondering how they’re going to pay for school or whether they’ll get to see the world beyond their own community. We could not be more grateful to team up with Brian to help out these young people on their journey to create change.” 

The Voyager Scholarship is a two-year program for students in their junior and senior years of college from across the United States who are committed to pursuing careers that serve the public and their communities. 

President Obama sits down for a taping with Airbnb CEO Brian Chesky at the Airbnb offices in San Francisco, CA on April 20, 2022. Photo credit: The Obama Foundation.

Voyagers will receive up to $50,000 in financial aid, Summer Voyage, 10-year travel stipend, Fall Summit, Network of leaders.

Applications are open to undergraduate students entering their junior year of college at an accredited four year college or university in the United States.

Applications will be accepted beginning Monday and must be received by June 14.  

Approximately 100 students will join the inaugural class of Voyagers. Accepted students will be notified in September.  

For more information and to apply visit,

For more information about the Obama Foundation visit Welcome to the Obama Foundation.

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