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China: Stephen Schwarzman launches scholarship program at Tsinghua University

The founder of Blackstone Group is launching a $300 million scholarship program to send foreign students to China’s Tsinghua University.

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Students at Yuanqian Primaray School in Jiangsu Province wave Chinese Communist Party flags on June 30, 2011. (ChinaFotoPress/AFP/Getty Images)

Stephen Schwarzman, founder of investment firm Blackstone Group LP, is launching a $300 million scholarship program to send students from the US and other countries to study at China’s Tsinghua University.

The program is modeled after the Rhodes Scholarships, which provide high-achieving foreign students with a year of study at England’s Oxford University.

The Schwarzman Scholars program will bring 200 foreign students to China for one year to earn a master’s degree, starting in 2016.

"I'm concerned with China growing at double or triple the rate of the West, that there will be tensions,” Schwarzman told Agence France-Press. “One needs to do something to start addressing misunderstandings and frustration.”

Schwarzman, 66, who has an estimated net worth of $7.3 billion, is donating $100 million to the venture, Bloomberg News reported.

The scholarship fund will be the largest internationally funded philanthropic project in China’s history, according to Reuters.

The Schwarzman Scholars will live in a newly constructed Xing Dynasty-style building on the east side of Tsinghua's campus, Schwarzman said in ceremony announcing the program today, Reuters reported.

According to Reuters:

The planned amenities, which include a sunken garden, pub and fitness area, are a far cry from facilities at most Chinese universities, where students sleep six or eight to a room and eat in austere canteens where many meals cost less than a dollar.

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/asia-pacific/china/130421/china-stephen-schwarzman-launches-rhodes-scholarship