150 students participate in IT-OBMEP Scholarships

150 students participate in IT-OBMEP Scholarships

The president of the Instituto TIM, Manoel Horacio, with the IT-OBMEP Scholarship holders who were medalists in the 2015 OBMEP


In 2017, about 150 university students are attending college thanks to the Instituto TIM-OBMEP Scholarships – an initiative that financially supports young people with a talent for mathematics and with good performance in the Brazilian Public School Math Olympics (OBMEP) to support themselves in the university. They are monthly scholarships in the amount of BRL 1,200.00, and they can be renewed for up to 4 years. Candidates must have been OBMEP medal holders and have been approved to a public university to study Astronomy, Biology, Computer Science, Economics, Engineering, Statistics, Physics, Mathematics, Medicine or Chemistry.

One of these young people is Maicon Araújo Siqueira, a native of Cocal dos Alves-PI, who studies Civil Engineering at the Federal University of Piauí, in Teresina-PI. Maicon’s father, who works with informal jobs in the area of civil construction, encouraged his son to work instead of studying. “He said that studying was something for rich kids, and that I should work on constructions with him. He felt guilty for not being able to pay for my studies,” says Maicon, who has been a scholarship holder since 2016. “My dad was very proud when I told him that I was going to study Civil Engineering at a federal university and that he should not worry about that.”

The central idea of the scholarships is to provide financial support so that low-income students, who have the chance to attend college, be able to sustain themselves in the municipalities where the campuses are – often far from their hometowns. Janaina Ferreira de Santana Santos is from Feira de Santana-BA, but she is studying Mathematics at the Federal University of Bahia, in Salvador-BA. A scholar since 2016, she has always enjoyed mathematics and she was a medalist five times – she won three gold and two bronze medals. With the scholarship, Janaina pays the rent of a room, food, transportation and the extra expenses with the university, such as books and xerox. “A lot of people need to move out of their cities to get quality education. Since I do not have to worry about expenses, I can focus on my studies.” She is the youngest of four siblings and the first of the family to go to college.

Vitoria Barim Pacela needed to leave Espírito Santo do Pinhal-SP, her hometown, to attend the course of Electrical Engineering at the State University of Campinas (Unicamp). In her first year of college, she was approved to study Physics at the University of Helsinki, Finland. The university is free, but she is only able to study abroad because the IT-OBMEP Scholarship was maintained. “There would be no other way for me to be studying in Finland today if it was not for this support,” says Vitoria. “I believe there are many students who, like me, feel limited in regard to an academically and professionally successful future.”

The first edition of Instituto-TIM OBMEP Scholarships took place in 2015. New students were selected in 2016 and in the beginning of 2017. Currently, the scholarship holders are students of Engineering (78), Mathematics (33), Medicine (14), Physics (9), Computer Science (7), Statistics (3), Economics (2) and Chemistry (1).