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K-State Today

August 31, 2021

Education Abroad scholarships benefit students with high financial need

Submitted by Katelin Christianer-Donkers

Since the 2019-20 academic year, more than 75% of the K-State Pell Grant recipients who participated in an education abroad program received an Education Abroad scholarship. For the summer and fall 2021 terms, 100% of the Pell Grant recipients going abroad were awarded scholarship funding.

Beginning in 2016, the Education Abroad Office began outreach and education efforts aimed at K-State Pell Grant recipients. Those efforts aimed to inform Pell Grant recipients about Education Abroad scholarships, and in particular, scholarships designed for students with limited financial means. Email campaigns were directed at Pell Grant recipients, and scholarship workshops and student panels were organized. The hope was by increasing awareness of Education Abroad scholarships among Pell Grant recipients and providing scholarship workshops and advice, this would increase the number of Pell Grant recipients receiving Education Abroad scholarships, and consequently, participating in education abroad programs.

Much of the outreach efforts focused on promotion of the nationally competitive Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship, which requires students to receive the Pell Grant to be eligible. Over the last 10 years, K-State has seen a 184% increase in applications and a 322% increase in recipients of the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship.

While there has been tremendous growth in applicants and recipients of the Gilman scholarship, because the scholarship is nationally competitive, it is more challenging to have the Gilman scholarship impact a large number of students. With this in mind, Education Abroad focused on encouraging K-State Pell Grant recipients to apply for the Gilman Scholarship and then direct them toward the many K-State Education Abroad scholarships funded by K-State alumni and other donors. The intention was for students to stack scholarships, so they could combine multiple education abroad scholarships from multiple sources and make an even greater financial impact on their ability to participate in education abroad programs. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Education Abroad awarded $180,500 annually in scholarships.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic halted education abroad programming at K-State from summer 2020 to spring 2021, Education Abroad does have more scholarship funding available for future education abroad terms.

As we gear up to send more students in the coming terms, the following K-State Education Abroad scholarships work well for students going to a variety of locations and/or terms: 

• Mike and Becky Goss International Program/Study Abroad Scholarship: For undergraduate or graduate students properly enrolled in any curriculum at K-State applying to an education abroad experience for at least one semester. Preference is given to students who have graduated from a Kansas high school.

• Mary Lynn Manning Study Abroad Scholarship: For students properly enrolled in the College of Business Administration or the College of Arts and Sciences at K-State. The recipient shall be majoring in business and minoring in modern languages; majoring in modern languages and minoring in business, or majoring in both business and modern languages. The student should have a desire to go abroad for a summer, semester or longer, utilizing their foreign language skills.

• Duane and Shirley Acker International Scholar Award: For undergraduate or graduate students who are participating in an approved education abroad experience. Preference will be given to students with no previous international experience.

Since students have been unable to study abroad in recent terms due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we expect to provide more scholarships than normal to these future participants because of the generous donations by all our scholarship donors.

Students who are interested in going abroad during a future term can request to meet with an Education Abroad advisor or email overseas@k-state.edu. View deadlines and other important information related to dates. 

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