Origin of the Fund

The Leo S. Rowe Pan American Fund was established by the Pan American Union (precursor of the Organization of American States) in 1948 in compliance with the following clause of the will of Dr. Leo Stanton Rowe:

"[...] and the entire remainder thereof unto the Pan American Union, hereinbefore mentioned, to be administered by the Governing Board of the Pan American Union as a revolving Fund for Latin American Students* who may desire to study in universities or colleges of the United States. This Revolving Fund may also be used by the Governing Board as a Loan Fund for the entire personnel of the Pan American Union under regulations prescribed by the Governing Board."

* At the time of his will, the Pan American Union was made up of the United States and Latin American countries only.

Dr. Rowe devoted the greater part of his life to fostering understanding and integration among the nations of the Americas.  He demonstrated special interest in the education of Latin American youth, whom he assisted throughout his lifetime, and to whom he bequeathed most of his assets in his will. Characterized by his humility, ability to solve problems and a good sense of humor, Dr. Rowe served as mentor to many youngsters, including Dr. Gabriel Betancur Mejía, founder of ICETEX in Colombia, a student loan program for abroad studies (read more here).