Announcing the Voyager Scholarship for Students with a Passion for Public Service

In an increasingly globalized world, forging connections is more important than ever. We know that young leaders with a passion for public service will be the ones to bridge divides and set a better course for our future. And that means we need to do everything we can to nurture their talents and curiosity.

In service of that mission, we’re so pleased to announce we’ve teamed up with Brian Chesky, Airbnb CEO, to create something really special: the Voyager Scholarship for Public Service.

On the surface, Brian and I might not seem all that similar. He was born in New York; I was born in Hawaii. He’s a tech founder; I’m not. But we have more in common than most people realize. Both of us traveled unlikely paths to get where we are today. I grew up in Hawaii and Indonesia, raised by a single mom, and worked as a constitutional law professor before getting into politics. Brian’s parents were social workers and he went to design school. But both of our parents instilled in us the importance of helping others from a very young age.

Michelle, Brian, and I all share the belief that connection doesn’t just enrich our own lives — it helps communities come together, forge common bonds, and solve big problems. It’s why Michelle and I started the Obama Foundation — to bring together the next generation of leaders and help them build connections and learn from each other. And it’s why we couldn’t be more excited about the Voyager Scholarship.

For so many young people who want to pursue public service, financial obstacles stand in the way. That’s why the Voyager Scholarship helps students with financial aid, meaningful travel experiences to expand their horizons, and a network of leaders who can support them.

I hope you’ll take a moment to discover what the Voyager Scholarship is all about. Applications are open now until June 14 to rising juniors in the United States — so please help us spread the word to eligible undergraduate students.

As we’re seeing around the world, we can’t take democracy, or tolerance, or progress for granted. We have to work for it. And that means supporting the individuals who want to be forces for good.




Dad, husband, President, citizen.

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Barack Obama

Barack Obama

Dad, husband, President, citizen.

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