Graduate student awarded International Peace Scholarship

International Peace Scholarship Fund logo and text; Pankhuri Aggarwal, IPS Recipient, 2019; headshot of Pankhuri

Pankhuri Aggarwal, an international student from India and Ph.D. candidate in clinical psychology, was awarded $12,500 as a part of the Philanthropic Education Organization (PEO) International Peace Scholarship for the academic year 2019-2020. This program gives funds to female international students studying in the United States and Canada for graduate studies. The scholarship can be used towards tuition, living expenses, or other school-related fees.

The PEO International Fund was established in 1949. Since then, scholarships have been awarded to 6,000 women across 168 countries. “It’s hard to believe,” Aggarwal said about receiving the scholarship. “It was truly a magical moment for me.”

Aggarwal completed her undergraduate degree from Lady Shri Ram College for Women, Delhi and masters degree from Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai in India before coming to Miami University for graduate school. She hopes to return to India to implement what she is learning. Specifically, she wants to work towards developing indigenous models to better understand depression in the Indian context.

“I’ve seen the need for mental health to grow as a field [in India],” Aggarwal said. “There’s still a lot of stigma around mental illness, and people are not really comfortable going for therapy. It’s more like people don’t understand what therapy is for, and people don’t feel like mental health deserves the same respect as physical health.”

“Without the support and encouragement from my mentors, family and friends, I could not have achieved that” says Aggarwal.