Opening Doors

Moses Brown has put increased scholarship funding at the center of its vision so that we can continue to attract the most talented and diverse students. We believe that enhancing access to MB will allow us to enroll the best minds and expose our students to the broadest range of perspectives, thereby strengthening the educational experience for our entire community.


Josabet Zepeda ’15, MB Alumni Award Recipient 2015

“Going to Moses Brown wasn’t my choice. My mother wanted me to get the education she felt I deserved. My daycare teacher Ms. Benita saw in me the desire to learn from books instead of playing with toys. They saw something in me and wanted to make my life easier by making it a little harder at first.

Growing up in two worlds wasn’t easy. But I will never forget the words of encouragement from so many of my teachers going back to third grade. They saw what my mother and Ms. Benita had seen, and helped me to eventually see it as well. I learned to appreciate my two worlds and become a proud member of the MB community.

Going on the music trip in eighth grade, helping people in the Dominican Republic junior year, attending proms, and getting an Alumni Award would not have been possible without the scholarship and financial aid that Moses Brown offered me.

Thanks to MB, I made unbelievable friends and learned so much. Now in college, I see that things are different. My teachers aren’t there physically to support me every day, but their words and advice will stay with me forever; the experiences I had at MB shaped me into the person I am today.

I can now see what my mother, Ms. Benita, and all of my teachers saw in me since the beginning: a Light.”


An MB Scholarship Story: Rufus Jones

Image          Last spring, our friends at Haverford College in Pennsylvania celebrated the 150th birthday of Rufus Jones, the highly influential American Quaker (1863-1948). Jones hailed from South China, Maine, and came to Moses Brown in 1879. His autobiography, Small Town Boy, written in 1941, includes a passage about his going to “Providence Friends School.” Rufus’ father was a farmer and did not have enough money to pay his son’s tuition, so Rufus applied for a scholarship and got it. He later went on to become a professor at Haverford.
           Rufus taught philosophy at Haverford and helped bring together two divisions of American Quakerism. Often described as a Quaker mystic, he was able to reconcile science and modern, liberal thinking with his Quakerism.
          Rufus was born to an old Quaker family. His uncle and aunt, Eli and Sybil Jones, established Friends Schools in Lebanon (then part of Syria) and Palestine. He went on to obtain an MA from Harvard, then returned to Haverford as a professor of psychology and philosophy.
          From the writings of the early Quakers, Jones crystallized the concept of the ‘inner light,” an idea central to modern liberal Quakerism. Rufus’ beliefs were always strongly coupled with a sense of responsibility towards the world at large.
          In 1917, when the U.S. entered the First World War, Rufus and Henry Cadbury established the American Friends Service Committee, to provide ways for young conscientious objectors to serve without joining the military. They set up courses for COs, training them to work with groups like the Friends Ambulance Unit in Europe. At the end of the war, Rufus steered the AFSC towards relief work and was instrumental in organizing the Quäkerspeisung, the large-scale feeding effort that saved millions in Germany from starvation.
          In 1927, Rufus traveled to Asia where he met Gandhi and visited the birthplace of the Buddha. Shortly after, he addressed the World Missionary Conference in Jerusalem, calling on them to be open to positive influences from other world religions, “gladly recognizing the good they contain.”
          Following the attacks on Jews on Kristallnacht in 1938, he went to Germany with two other Quakers and met with Reinhard Heydrich, later one of the architects of Hitler’s ‘Final Solution,’ to plead for better treatment for the Jews. Rufus believed that it was in part Heydrich’s awareness of their work with the Quäkerspeisung that led to their appeal being heard politely. “The promise made to us was kept,” he wrote after the war, “and the door was opened for the extensive relief which followed our visit, including the emigration of many Jews.”
          In 1947, Rufus represented the AFSC in Stockholm when the Quakers were awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
          Considering all of Rufus Jones’ accomplishments, we’d say his scholarship was money well spent.
          Thanks to George Chappell, MB ’55, for inspiration for this article. A member of a Friends Meeting in Maine, George read Small Town Boy as part of a recent study group.