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Gilman $upport$ $tudy Abroad (Free Money!)

Gilman logo

Mark your calendars: for students who want to study abroad in Summer or Fall Quarter, the deadline to apply for the Gilman Scholarship, which awards up to $5,000, is Tuesday, March 1st.

During last year’s Summer, Fall Quarter, and Academic Year application cycle for the Gilman Scholarship, Shoreline Community College had more recipients than any other community college in the country. In total, Shoreline students received $11,500 to go towards the study abroad program of their choice.

But what may be the most impressive fact about all this is that more than 60% of Shoreline students who applied for the Gilman scholarship received funding.

There are a couple of reasons why so many Shoreline students get money from the Gilman Scholarship program.

First, only students who receive a Pell Grant are eligible for the scholarship. (The Pell Grant is one form of federal financial aid – if you receive financial aid, you can find out if you receive a Pell Grant by visiting the Financial Aid office or by logging in to the financial aid portal.) Because this scholarship is only open to a limited group (of people who really need the support), the likelihood that any given applicant will receive funding is higher.

Another reason is this: the Gilman Scholarship program loves community college students. They really, really want to help community college students to study abroad. In fact, they actually changed the rules of their scholarship about a year ago in order to make it easier for community college students (and only community college students) to fit an eligible study abroad program into their schedules.

So if you want to get a Gilman Scholarship to study abroad, now is the time!

Remember, too, that we are here to support you through the application process. We are more than happy to offer advice and assistance on your personal statement and other application materials. In fact, that’s partly what we get paid for. Be sure to take advantage of this!

To learn more about the Gilman Scholarship, or about our study abroad programs, you can contact us using the form below, or by emailing studyabroad@shoreline.edu. You are also welcome to stop by and see us on the top floor of the PUB, room 9302. Just tell the front desk that you want to see someone about studying abroad.

Why Study Abroad: Weekend Reading

Okay, yes, I know it’s Wednesday, which by most people’s standards is not the weekend. But during the beautiful Seattle summer, when there are hours and hours of sunlight even after the workday ends, every day feels a little bit weekendish. So if you want to get an early start and spend some time during these sunny afternoons and evenings reading about some of the myriad benefits of studying abroad, nobody could fault you for it.

In “How Studying or Working Abroad Makes You Smarter,” Time quotes one researcher, William Maddux from INSEAD, who writes, “People who have international experience or identify with more than one nationality are better problem solvers and display more creativity, our research suggests. What’s more, we found that people with this international experience are more likely to create new businesses and products and to be promoted.”

Inside Higher Ed reports on a decade-long study of study abroad outcomes at the University System of Georgia (which includes everything from community colleges to research universities) called the GLOSSARI project. Among their many other findings, they report that students who study abroad have slightly higher GPAs and better graduation rates. This, even after controlling for differences in SAT scores and other factors, so if all else is equal, the study abroad students fare better in these areas.

Despite all of this, it is important to remember that to really reap the benefits of studying, interning, or working overseas, you need to immerse yourself in the culture. As with most things, what you get from the experience depends a lot on how much effort you put into it. You don’t want to end up like this: “6-Day Visit to Rural African Village Completely Changes Woman’s Facebook Profile Picture.

From The PIE News: US government to launch study abroad branch

Barcelona SAE 2

Here’s a pretty clear signal that people at the highest levels of the U.S. government believe that study abroad really is important: According to The PIE News, the State Department is opening a study abroad office devoted to getting more U.S. students to study abroad, with an emphasis on increasing diversity among those students.

Add to this Generation Study Abroad, a State Department supported initiative led by the Institute of International Education (IIE) that aims to double the number of Americans who study abroad by the end of this decade, and we have a whole lot of support for the idea that study abroad is not a luxury, but an essential component of a well-rounded education. And programs like the Gilman Scholarship (sponsored by the State Department) can provide the financial support to make study abroad possible for exactly those students who think it’s not for them.

Of course, not everyone can study abroad, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t gain international experience. With opportunities to engage with the international community right here on Shoreline’s campus like the Conversation Partner Program, as well as chances to collaborate with students around the world online (yes, we are working on that), all students can learn about other cultures, improve intercultural communication skills, and maybe pick up a foreign language.

To learn more about your study abroad, scholarship, and other international opportunities here at Shoreline, use the contact form below.

Shoreline Student Awarded Fund for Education Abroad Scholarship

Rebekah Thorne

Rebekah Thorne

On Tuesday, March 24, Rebekah Thorne, a Shoreline Community College student, was awarded over $1,800 by the Fund for Education Abroad. More than 1,600 students from across the United States applied for the scholarship; only 36 were selected as recipients. The money will be used to cover more than half of the cost of Rebekah’s trip to Cape Town, South Africa, with Shoreline’s summer study abroad program there, led by Dr. Ernest Johnson, a Multicultural Studies instructor.

Dr Johnson writes that the program, titled The Challenge and Promise of a Multicultural South Africa, “will examine the social and cultural history of South Africa and the current efforts to create a democratic, multicultural nation.” Rebekah first became interested in the program when she was in Dr. Johnson’s Multicultural Studies 105 course in 2012.

Rebekah, who is in the Career Education Options (CEO) program, isn’t what many people think of when they think of study abroad students. She’s not rich. She’s a first-generation college student. Her educational path hasn’t been a traditional one: the CEO program is for students who have not received a high school diploma; Rebekah earned her GED after taking classes at Shoreline.

“[Studying abroad] was a dream, but I didn’t think it was ever going to happen. When I heard about the South Africa program and saw the posters for it, I was really envious of the people in the pictures.” It was only after John Tankersley, an International Student Advisor, told her about study abroad scholarships that she ever thought of studying abroad as a possibility.

Rebekah plans to finish her studies at Shoreline in 2016 and hopes to transfer to Mt. Holyoke or Smith University to pursue her Bachelor’s degree in Biology, with a minor in Gender or Women’s Studies. She hopes one day to earn a Master’s degree and work in the field of animal sciences.

If You Want To Apply for the Gilman Scholarship, You Need To Get an Official Transcript Now!

Gilman logo

An official transcript is one of the essential, necessary, non-negotiable (Gah! My thesaurus just spontaneously combusted!) parts of the application for the Gilman Scholarship, which awards up to $5,000 to over 30% of applicants (yes, actually more than one out of three people who applies gets a scholarship—I’m pretty sure I’ve written something about that before).

The deadline for the Gilman is March 3rd (for Summer and Fall 2015 programs), putting it about two weeks away, and it takes at least one week to get an official transcript, so you do the math.

Seriously. You wouldn’t want me to do it for you. I’m really, really bad at math.

Anyway, the main point here is this: Get an official transcript ASAP if you want to get up to $5,000 to study abroad! Because that’s almost a million dollars!

(Like I said, really bad at math.)

Quick Updates

Just learned of upcoming study abroad opportunities through our partner schools in the Washington State Community College Consortium for Study Abroad (WCCCSA – pronounced wick-sa). There will be short-term programs in the Netherlands, China (specifically Kunming, capital of one of the most beautiful provinces in China, Yunnan, which translates to South of the Clouds), and Turkey.

More details to come soon. As always, if you would like to learn more, contact us at studyabroad@shoreline.edu.