Elon Students Set Off on Study Abroad with $134,000 in Study Abroad Scholarships

Elon students were awarded more than $134,000 in scholarships for fall study abroad programs, including $39,000 from Elon donors.

 The Isabella Cannon Global Education Center is proud to announce that Elon students have been awarded over $134,000 in scholarships for fall study abroad programs.

Three Elon students, Stacey Crutchfield, Kuylain Howard, and Maria Restuccio, have been awarded the nationally-competitive Gilman scholarship.  The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship program aims to support a diverse range of students who have been traditionally under-represented in study abroad.  The program strongly encourages students to choose non-traditional study abroad destinations, especially those outside of Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand. The scholarship is funded by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and is administered by the Institute of International Education.  

Howard was also awarded the nationally-competitive Freeman-ASIA scholarship, which is designed to increase the number of people from the United States with first-hand exposure to and understanding of Asia and its peoples and cultures.

External scholarships play a large role in the GEC’s goal of 100% access to study abroad for Elon students, as they can help to bridge the gap between what a family can pay and the cost of study abroad and help bring the benefits of study abroad to all students.  Kyle Keith, a sophomore North Carolina Teaching Fellow from Mills River, NC  and returned Gilman awardee, said of his experience, “…after spending time in Costa Rica, I’ve realized that there is nothing I can’t do once I put my mind to it. Did I know Spanish before coming here? No. Would I have ever gotten on a rollercoaster? Certainly not. But now, I’ve overcome so much by simply stepping out of my comfort zone and appreciating the value in each challenge that’s been thrown my way. I hope I can take these new found traits back home with me.”  Kyle spent the spring semester at the Elon Centre in Costa Rica with his Teaching Fellows cohort.

Elon’s current Gilman awardees are truly modeling the organization’s goal of supporting study abroad to non-traditional locations.  Kuylain Howard, a junior international studies major from Kannapolis, North Carolina, is spending a full year at Kansai Gaidai University near Osaka, Japan.  Junior political science major Stacey Crutchfield from Burlington, NC is studying in Cape Town, South Africa, and sophomore Mario Restuccio of Columbus, Ohio is spending a semester in Dakar, Senegal.

Restuccio said of her experience, “Although I have only been in Senegal 4 weeks, it has been an absolutely life changing experience. During my time abroad I have opened myself to a totally new worldview, learned a new language and immersed myself in a different culture. This experience is helping me to discover new passions, challenging me on a personal and academic level, and shaping me into the person I want to be. That being said, none of this would have been possible without study abroad scholarships.”

Twenty-two students received other external scholarships from study abroad organizations such as CIEE: The Council on International Educational Exchange, the Danish Institute for Study Abroad, and Arcadia University.  The value of these awards totaled more than $76,000. 

In addition to external funding, students also received support from Elon.  The GEC awarded more than $39,000 in scholarships to 39 students.

In total, more than 275 Elon students will be studying abroad this fall. They will be on 42 programs in 20 different countries around the world.