State Department’s Gilman Scholarship helps 2 study abroad in Ghana and Colombia

Two Wayne State students have received Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarships, highly competitive awards sponsored by the U.S. Department of State to enable undergrads of limited financial means to study or intern abroad.

Chloe Fraleigh
Chloe Fraleigh

Media arts major Chloe Fraleigh will participate in the Office of Study Abroad’s new program exploring the history and culture of Ghana, and Spanish/math major Alison McGhee left this month for Baranquilla, Colombia, to study at the Universidad del Norte through International Studies Abroad.

The women are among a select group of 1,201 students from 363 U.S. colleges and universities receiving the grant, sponsored by the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and administered by the Institute of International Education.

Fraleigh will stay at Ashesi University in Accra, participating in activities and meetings with community, political and business leaders during the monthlong trip. Leading up to an early July departure, she and fellow participants are meeting with Associate Professor Jennifer Hart of history, whose research for the last decade has centered on Ghana and whose guest lecture on the trip excited Fraleigh enough to further explore the opportunity.

“I just didn’t think (study abroad) was possible, but the Study Abroad staff was really helpful with information about programs and funding opportunities,” says Fraleigh.

Applying the Gilman Scholarship, the university’s summer tuition discount and an additional gift from a donor, Fraleigh says the majority of the trip's cost is covered, leaving her free to concentrate on a multi-media final project that tells the story of an experience she never would have imagined before. 

Alison McGhee
Alison McGhee

McGhee’s award covers the cost of tuition for calculus and Spanish courses, fulfilling academic requirements that will keep her on track to graduate in May 2019.

The women speak high praises of the Study Abroad staff, who brought the Gilman award to their attention and assisted them through the extensive application process. McGhee had applied unsuccessfully before, and with her impending graduation narrowing the chance for further international study, is grateful that the team's feedback and encouragement helped her submit a successful application.

Study Abroad is part of the Office of International Programs, which leads Wayne State’s global engagement by creating opportunities that foster international education and research, facilitate the exchange of individuals and ideas that promote global competencies and citizenship, and provide resources that support the expansion of the university’s global agenda. Follow us on Twitter @WayneOIP.

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