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Eleven West Virginia University students will study abroad as Gilman Scholars

Eleven West Virginia University students will have the opportunity to take their education beyond the U.S. borders and make their dreams to study abroad a reality – thanks to the Gilman Scholarship.

Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, the Gilman Scholarship is designed to assist students who want to study abroad but have financial constraints in doing so. Students receive up to $5,000 depending on need, duration, location and cost of the study abroad program.

Since its inception in 2001, 20,000 students from 1,124 U.S. institutions have had the opportunity to study abroad in 144 countries.

Ryan Claycomb, the associate dean of the WVU Honors College and faculty adviser for the scholarship, said the Gilman Scholarship allows students to diversify themselves and broaden their horizons – an opportunity they might not have otherwise.

“What is wonderful about the Gilman Scholarship is that they specifically target the kinds of students who aren’t easily able to go abroad, but who often benefit from it the most,” he said. “Plus, because these are sharp students from a wide variety of backgrounds and intellectual disciplines, they really represent the full diversity of who we are as West Virginia University.”

The 2016 recipients from WVU are:

  • Alessandra Daniels, a world languages, literature and linguistics major from Washington D.C. who will be studying in Japan.
  • Meghan Goettel, accounting, Fairmont, South Korea.
  • Andrew Morrison, engineering, Marlinton, India.
  • Matt Parsley, exercise physiology, Varney, Vietnam and Cambodia.
  • Rachel Parsley, nursing, Huntington, Cyprus.
  • Jacob Powers, political science, Morgantown, Mexico.
  • Courtney Scarlato, world languages, literature and linguistics and nursing, Morgantown, China.
  • Jamie Shimp, history, Gerrardstown, China.
  • Andrew Truax, political science, Berkeley Springs, Botswana.
  • Janelle Vickers, English and communication studies, Moundsville, New Zealand.
  • Sarah Yourman, occupational therapy, Fredericksburg, Pennsylvania, Vietnam and Cambodia.

Prior to this year, 25 WVU students have earned Gilman Scholarships. Six students received the award in 2015.

“The fact that we are seeing more and more students apply and win this scholarship attests to the growing sense on this campus that our students should reach for the national and international opportunities, and that they can win them and take advantage of the full scope of a truly global education,” Claycomb said.