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Study Abroad office offers new scholarships

Encouraging underrepresented student populations to participate in international study experiences will be the focus of a new scholarship announced by The University of Memphis Center for International Educational Services (CIES), according to a press release from the university.

 The Study Abroad Access Initiative (SAAI) was created in partnership with the TRiO Program, a federal outreach and student services program designed to provide services for individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, and Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change to aid in the upfront costs of international travel. The release said students have been discouraged due to the cost of a round-trip ticket and a passport. The SAAI eliminates this barrier and allows these students an opportunity for international study, the press release said.

“The goal is to eliminate the barrier of cost,” Jonathan Holland, a study abroad advisor for the university, said. “There are lots of scholarships, but many students get them late, so we’re hoping to aid the initial costs with this one.”

The CIES and its partners plan to offer active members of the TRiO and Hooks African American Male Initiative (HAAMI) an opportunity to apply for this scholarship to aid travel cost. Both programs focus on improving the retention and graduation rates at the U of M by enriching a student’s academic, personal and social development. Members of these organizations can apply to receive $2,000 to supplement the initial costs associated with an U of M study abroad program.

Rorie Trammel, the assistant director of the HAAMI program, said the organization is “grateful” and “excited” for this partnership, and the SAAI will provide HAAMI members an outstanding opportunity to broaden their educational experiences as students through study abroad.

If the pilot program SAAI is successful, CIES hopes to collaborate with other offices on campus serving underrepresented populations in the future, according to the press release.

To receive this scholarship, applicants must be an active participant in the U of M TRiO Program or HAAMI at the time of application, meet the minimum application requirements for a University of Memphis Study Abroad Program, and if receiving Pell Grant, applicants must attend one Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship Workshop, offered by U of M Study Abroad Office.


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