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UNG top producer of Gilman scholars

2017-12-19-Lyric Jones
Senior Lyric Jones is one of the UNG students awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship. UNG had eight students awarded the Gilman in 2016-17, making it one of the top-producing schools of Gilman Scholars by the U.S. Department of State.

The University of North Georgia (UNG) has been named as one of the top-producing schools of Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship awards by the U.S. Department of State.

UNG is No. 3 on the list among large public and private schools with more than 15,000 students in Georgia for the 2016-17 academic year. The two schools with more Gilman scholars were University of Georgia with 20 and Georgia Institute of Technology with 10.

UNG had eight students awarded the Gilman in 2016-17, and eight more students in 2017-18.

"Winning a prestigious Gilman scholarship often serves as a stepping stone to other nationally competitive opportunities. Often times, our Gilman scholars go on to win other top scholarships like the Boren and the Fulbright," said Dr. Anastasia Lin, assistant vice president for research and engagement and assistant dean of student research and scholarship. "Still other students leverage the study abroad experience afforded by the Gilman in their successful applications to graduate school programs and other career opportunities."

A total of 19 public and private colleges of all enrollment sizes in Georgia made the list. This is the first year the State Department has compiled a list of top-producing colleges and universities of the Gilman scholarship. The grant program enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, thereby gaining skills critical to national security and economic competitiveness.

"UNG is proud to support our students in taking advantage of the Gilman International Scholarship Program," said Dr. Andy Novobilski, associate provost for research and engagement and chief research officer. "This program selects from a group of students who don’t see obstacles as insurmountable barriers to future success, only as challenges to be overcome in reaching their goals."

The Gilman is open to U.S. citizen undergraduate students who receive Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study and intern abroad programs worldwide. Lin explained the scholarship is unique because it is geared toward supporting students who are underrepresented in study abroad programs.

"The scholarship is interested in diversifying the types of students who study abroad, including those who do not have the economic resources to do so," she said.

Last year, UNG senior Lyric Jones from Augusta, Georgia, was awarded the Gilman for a full academic year to study in China. In January, Monica Pizano of Jefferson, Georgia, won the scholarship for the spring 2018 semester to study abroad in Spain. Then one month later, six UNG students received the Gilman for the summer semester.

They are:

  • Devin Hing, sociology major, study in Israel, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Cambodia
  • Matthew Howell, international affairs major with a Middle East concentration, study in Morocco
  • Jillian Jay, biology pre-med major, study in Israel, Sri Lanka, Thailand, and Cambodia
  • Brooklyn Rouse, sociology major, study in Japan
  • Rachael Williams, international affairs major with a Middle East concentration, study in Morocco
  • Chelsey Willoughby, sociology major, study in Israel, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Cambodia

These eight UNG students are among the 1,000 American undergraduates to receive a Gilman scholarship. Since 2013, UNG has seen 28 students earn the scholarship to study abroad.

UNG’s Center for Global Engagement, Financial Aid office and many academic departments collaborate to find opportunities for students to travel overseas and thrive while learning in a new culture.

The Gilman program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and is supported in its implementation by the Institute of International Education.

The complete list of large colleges and universities is available on the 2016-17 Gilman Top Producing Institutions by size and type page. 

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