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Loyola students receive national scholarships to study abroad

Loyola press release - June 11, 2015

Three undergraduates receive prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships

Loyola University New Orleans junior Juli Smith is intrigued by Taiwan’s language and culture and has a special interest in studying Taiwanese Sign Language. Malaika Lucien, also a junior, wants to spend a year studying business and perfecting her French, which she has grown up speaking. Junior Sarah Willey seeks to immerse herself in Rabat, Morocco studying in both French and Arabic. Those hopes will now become reality thanks to three prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships awarded to the Loyola students.

"Many Loyola students are prime candidates to apply for this outstanding award from the U.S. Department of State," said Alisa Jackson, study abroad adviser in the Center for International Education at Loyola. "I am thrilled that three of our students were selected for the prestigious honor this year."

The Gilman scholarship program offers awards for undergraduate study abroad to students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two- or four-year college or university. Since its inception in 2001, more than 16,000 students nationwide have used the Gilman scholarship to study in 142 countries. The program encourages students to choose non-traditional study abroad destinations outside of Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The Gilman scholarship program is funded through the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000 and is sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.

The three Loyola students were selected from among 860 applicants from 332 colleges and universities across the U.S., Jackson said.

Smith, an international business major, was awarded $5,000 to study in Taiwan during the full 2015-16 academic year. She will study at Providence University, through International Student Exchange Program (ISEP). Additionally, she was one of only three students selected to receive the Fund for Education Abroad’s Academic Year Scholarship of $10,000. The mission of the Fund for Education Abroad (FEA) is to increase opportunities for dedicated American students to participate in high-quality, rigorous education abroad programs by reducing financial restrictions through the provision of grants and scholarships.

Lucien, a finance and political science double major, was also awarded $5,000 to study at the ESCE, a prestigious business school in Paris for the full year. She also hopes to intern at a French company in the spring semester.

Willey, a contract major in international development, was awarded $5,000 to study in Morocco through the Council on International Educational Exchange .

More information on the Gilman and FEA Scholarship programs and study abroad is available online.