June 20, 2024

Global Democracy Ambassador Scholarship awarded to Daryna Zaitseva

In February 2022, Russia launched approximately 100 missiles at Ukraine, creating a full-scale invasion to take over the country. Since then, the war has only worsened, causing havoc and heartbreak for the country and its citizens. 

Daryna Zaitseva, one of the university’s international students, is no stranger to the recent war. Born and raised in Mariupol, Ukraine, Zaitseva decided to come to the university to earn a doctorate in dentistry. But, being an international student can come with challenges. Zaitseva’s family lost their home, work and so much more due to the war, so paying the university’s tuition seemed like an impossible task. 

Zaitseva quickly went searching for scholarships and talking with advisors so she could stay at the university. Thankfully, she found two scholarships that were able to help her pay for a large portion of her education. 

She received a presidential scholarship on account of her academic achievements from the university. She also received the Global Democracy Ambassador Scholarship paid for by KIND, the makers of the KIND bar. This helped pay for a remaining chunk of the remaining tuition.

Zaitseva has been able to keep her spirits high while studying and says that the kindness found in professors at the university have enabled her to keep going and to do her absolute best. 

Daryna donning the Ukrainian flag in downtown Columbus. Photo courtesy of Daryna Zaitseva.

She graduates at the end of the spring semester and is looking to start dental school at The Ohio State University in the fall. Throughout her years at Capital and the turmoil faced back home, she has maintained a 3.94 GPA.

Zaitseva is thankful for both scholarships and currently uses them to bring awareness to the Capital community on the war in Ukraine. 

She said, “I was just really interested in the whole idea of the scholarship because democracy is such a valuable thing that we have and yet we don’t appreciate it enough. I get to educate people on what’s going on in the world, which is what we really need right now. I also get to spread awareness about the importance of democracy, not only in Ukraine but also in the United States. There are all these beautiful things that I get to do while being a part of this scholarship.” 

She also is grateful to the university community, faculty members and students who “helped [her] remember that [she is] more than just a student.”

“I am a human with my own feelings, fears and emotions and they were so supportive of me,” Zaitseva said. 
She hopes to find the same loving community as she starts her journey at The Ohio University in the fall. As she is not a citizen yet and cannot apply for FAFSA, she hopes that The Ohio State University will work with her like Capital University has in the last few years.

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