Fellowship Application Instructions

The John Mack ABANA Fellowship
Celebrating Newcomers to Business and Finance


This Fellowship was established to honor the indomitable spirit of John Mack, former Chairman and CEO of Morgan Stanley.  As beautifully detailed in his memoir, Up Close and All In, John’s drive to succeed comes in large part from his Lebanese heritage, particularly his grandfather, Hanna Makhoul Fakhoury, who immigrated to the U.S. in 1903. From an Ellis Island newcomer to the CEO of Morgan Stanley in three generations, the Mack legacy is inspiring. The ABANA Foundation is proud to sponsor the John Mack ABANA Fellowship as we honor John and his family by supporting the education of others who might themselves become a future John Mack.

The Award

The John Mack ABANA Fellowship includes:

(a)   A $15,000 grant for up to two years (new admits only need apply once)
(b)   A one-week exclusive NYC industry summit in May 2024
(c)   Complimentary access to all ABANA events (conferences, fireside chats, networking)
(d)   A dedicated ABANA mentor

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the John Mack ABANA Fellowship, applicants must:

  • Be of Arab/MENA heritage or have a proven interest in the MENA region.
  • Have verified financial need.
  • Be enrolled in or accepted into an accredited MBA or joint-degree program (No Executive MBAs).
  • Have a GMAT score of 600+ (or GRE equivalent).
  • Have demonstrated interest in pursuing a business/finance career.

Application Process

Where to apply:    ABANA Foundation Website

Key dates:          
Application opens: November 1, 2023
Final deadline: April 2, 2024
Notification date: No later than May 2, 2024

(i)    Resume (CV)
(ii)   Four essays (see below)
(iii)  Two letters of reference (one academic and one professional)

Essays (max 250 words each)

  • Describe how you are inspired by Arab/MENA culture and how it has positively influenced your personal and/or professional journey.
  • Detail your professional aspirations and roadmap.
  • What is the most important business, economic or financial change currently happening in the MENA region, and why?
  • John Mack is a third-generation Arab American. His family story is the classical American Dream story premised on grit, hard work, and the pursuit of education to build a better life. Tell us something about how this story inspires you?

About the ABANA Foundation

Since 1983, ABANA has been the foremost U.S. hub for professionals intrigued by the MENA region’s business and finance landscape. Through diverse events and programs, ABANA offers its members unparalleled opportunities to network and amass knowledge on key industry topics including fintech, sustainability, and economic development. The ABANA Foundation is the 501(c)3 charitable arm of ABANA that empowers its members through education.