Two displaced Syrian doctors have received full-tuition scholarships worth $65,000 each to attend the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.
The recipients are Dr. Alfred Tager and Dr. Mohammad Darwish, who are both from Damascus, the capital of Syria and its largest city.
They will pursue degrees in the master's program in public health.
The first-of-their- kind scholarships were created last year by the Bloomberg School and the Johns Hopkins Center for Humanitarian Health in response to the worsening Syrian refugee crisis.
The scholarships are geared toward helping displaced Syrian health care workers learn new skills that can one day to be used to improve health care in their country.
"There are thousands and thousands of Syrian health care workers who are either not able to practice or not able to continue their education because of the war," Dr. Paul Spiegel, director of the Center for Humanitarian Health and a professor in the department of international health at the Bloomberg School, said in a statement. "We are excited to welcome these two doctors to the school, where they will learn from us and where we will certainly learn a lot from them."
Tager is a senior research associate at the Charleston Area Medical Center Health Education and Research Institute in Charleston, W.Va. Darwish is based in Lebanon with the Palestine Red Crescent Society, which provides training in first aid and disaster management in support of refugees living in Syria and Lebanon.
Nearly 5 million people have fled Syria since 2011, seeking safety in Lebanon, Turkey, Jordan and beyond, according to the U.N. High Commission for Refugees.