Want to study abroad but think you can’t afford it? Think again, says Rachele Kanigel, who wrote this blog post as the co-director of ieiMedia’s new program in Kyoto, Japan.
One of the best ways to raise money for a study abroad program is to apply for a scholarship from the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program. This federally funded program offers grants for U.S. citizen undergraduate students of limited financial means to pursue academic studies or credit-bearing, career-oriented internships abroad.
Several students have won Gilman scholarships to study abroad with ieiMedia. This year, Amy Venn, a student at Valley City State University in North Dakota, won a Gilman scholarship to study in our Oslo, Norway, program, and you can see several of her blogposts here. In 2013 Taylor Gilman a journalism student at Metropolitan State University, won a $4,000 Gilman scholarship to study with ieiMedia in Istanbul. Kat Russell, a student at California State University, Northridge, won a $5,000 Gilman scholarship to study in Istanbul in 2011. You can read about her experience in this piece she wrote for MediaShift.
The Gilman program is designed to “broaden the student population that studies and interns abroad by supporting undergraduates who might not otherwise participate due to financial constraints,” according to the program’s website. It aims to “support students who have been traditionally under-represented in education abroad, including but not limited to, students with high financial need, community college students, students in underrepresented fields such as the sciences and engineering, students with diverse ethnic backgrounds, and students with disabilities.”
This year the Gilman program will award more than 2,800 scholarships of up to $5,000. Award amounts will vary depending on the length of study and student need; the average grant is $3,000. About 27 percent of students who apply win Gilman scholarships.
The program is open to students from public and private institutions from all 50 states; Washington, DC; and Puerto Rico.
To be eligible for a Gilman Scholarship, an applicant must:
- Be a citizen of the United States;
- Be an undergraduate student in good standing at an accredited institution of higher education in the United States (including both two-year and four-year institutions);
- Be receiving a Federal Pell Grant or provide proof that he/she will be receiving a Pell Grant during the term of his/her study abroad program or internship;
- Be in the process of applying to, or accepted for, a study abroad or internship program of at least two weeks for community college students and four weeks for students from four-year institutions, in a single country and eligible for credit from the student’s home institution. Proof of program acceptance is required prior to award disbursement;
- Plan to study in a country not currently under a travel warning issued by the United States Department of State. (ieiMedia never holds a study abroad course in these countries when they are on the travel warning list.)
Award recipients are chosen by a competitive selection process and must use the award to defray study- or intern-abroad costs. These costs include program tuition, room and board, books, local transportation, insurance and international airfare.
The Gilman Program offers two summer application cycles for summer programs. The deadlines are Oct. 4 and March 7. People who apply in October will find out in late February; those who apply in March find out in May.
All applications are due by 11:59 p.m. Central Daylight Time on the date they are due. The online application system will close at this time and no more applications will be accepted. This deadline also includes uploading official transcripts from your current college or university and any transfer institution listed in your application.
Here are some tips for applying to the Gilman program:
- Before you begin the application, contact the appropriate offices at your school to determine the correct study abroad and financial aid adviser(s) who must certify your application. Some institutions designate a specific financial aid or study abroad adviser to certify all Gilman Scholarship applications.
- Submit your application at least a few days before the due date to ensure that you do not miss the deadline as a result of technical difficulties or because of heavy traffic on the Gilman website. Make sure your application is complete!
- Some institutions require a written release of information form before your advisers can certify your application. Failure to submit a written release of information form to your adviser, if required by your university, will delay the processing of your application.
- The Gilman application requires two essays: the Statement of Purpose Essay and the Follow-on Service Project Proposal. When writing your Statement of Purpose essay, stress what you hope to gain from the program and how it will help you fulfill professional and personal goals. For more information about the essays, visit the Gilman program website. (http://www.iie.org/Programs/Gilman-Scholarship-Program/Application-Process/Essays)
- Eligible programs must be a minimum of four weeks (28 days)— or two weeks (14 days) for current community college students — in one country and can be as long as one academic year. Students who are interested in ieiMedia’s Kyoto program should also plan to participate in the optional three-day Japan English Model United Nations Conference immediately before the international reporting program, so that study-abroad experience will meet the 28-day requirement.
If you do not qualify for a Gilman scholarship, contact your financial aid office and study-abroad office to inquire about other funding opportunities.
Two talented young photographers are the first recipients of ieiMedia’s James Foley Memorial Scholarship in International Photojournalism, established in honor of the photojournalist who was tragically executed last August while covering the war in Syria.Manuel J. Orbegozo, a senior at Humboldt State University in Arcata, California, received a $5,000 scholarship to attend the Urbino program. In 2012, Orbegozo worked as a photographer and writer at “Siete,” a weekly magazine based in Lima, Peru. There, he founded Azotea, a citizen journalism site that covered the capital’s political and cultural life. He is currently editor-in-chief of El Leñador, focused on the Latino community in Humboldt County. In his scholarship application, Orbegozo wrote, “As a college journalist, I realized that my degree could be achieved in a classroom, while my overall skills could only be refined through an experience abroad.”
Emily Teague, a freshman at California State University in Chico, received a $2,000 grant to attend the Jerusalem program. While still in high school, Teague was hired as a photojournalist for Chico State’s award-winning newspaper, The Orion. She was named “Best Photographer” on The Orion’s staff, and won fifth place in a national photojournalism competition at the Associated Collegiate Press. In September 2014 she photographed at the front lines of the “Flood Wall Street” direct action and at environmental protests in New York, Pittsburgh, and throughout California. She’s spending this semester traveling and photographing in Europe.
“We were impressed with the high level of work in many of the submissions,” says Dennis Chamberlin, photography instructor in the Urbino Program and a Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist. Chamberlin and photo instructors Susan Biddle and Robert Reeder reviewed the applicants. “It was difficult for the jury to choose only one winner because there were several portfolios that were quite strong.”
In Urbino, Orbegozo will study with Chamberlin and Susan Biddle, former Washington Post staff photographer and White House photographer. In Jerusalem, Teague will work with Linda Gradstein, formerly of National Public Radio; Ilene Prusher of The Jerusalem Post; and Cathy Shafran, who has worked in the Jerusalem bureaus of ABC, CNN, Associated Press Television News, Britain’s ITN, and Canada’s CTV.
“This has been a successful inaugural program for this scholarship,” says ieiMedia president and founder Andrew Ciofalo. “We will continue to offer it next year as part of our commitment to emphasizing the importance of photojournalism in our program. The excellence of our applicants this year resulted in our establishing the Foley Grant in the amount of $2,000 for distinguished runners up. We plan to continue this grant as well.”
“To be a reporter in Istanbul is to drop into the middle of the action.”
“This has been much more than a chance to live in Italy for a month–it’s been a chance to learn and apply valuable information that will make me more equipped for a professional career in media production.”
“I learned that journalism is so much more than disseminating news. It’s linking people from opposite sides of the world through a core human interest.”
These are the voices of ieiMedia’s 2014 students, who traveled this past summer to France, Spain, Italy, Turkey, and Northern Ireland to study multimedia journalism, narrative journalism, social media, international reporting, and creative writing. They produced videos, made photos, and reported and wrote about everything from flamenco and truffles to Syrian women in Turkey and the tension in Hebron.
Now we’re looking forward to next summer’s courses and to a new crop of equally inspired–and inspiring–students. And we’re hoping that your students, and perhaps you, will join us.
For summer 2015, we offer six international learning adventures:
- Valencia, Spain: narrative journalism
- Nice, France: multimedia journalism
- Jerusalem, Israel: international reporting
- Urbino, Italy: multimedia journalism, magazine journalism
- Armagh, No. Ireland: creative writing, multimedia journalism
- Istanbul, Turkey: international reporting, internships
In addition, we are proud to announce ieiMedia’s James Foley Memorial Scholarship in International Photojournalism in honor of the journalist tragically executed while covering the war in Syria. The winner of the $5,000 scholarship will attend our program in Urbino, Italy, to study with our award-winning photography faculty, including Pulitzer prize winner Dennis Chamberlin and former White House photographer Susan Biddle.
Keep in mind that our application deadline is February 1, 2015. Applications are considered on a rolling basis, and will close as each program is filled. Apply early to secure a spot!
Please share this information with your students, colleagues, and friends.
In honor of the courageous men and women who risk their lives in order to report from the world’s most dangerous places ieiMedia has established the James Foley Memorial Scholarship in memory of the photojournalist who was tragically executed while covering the war in Syria.
This $5,000 photojournalism scholarship covers tuition, program fees and meals for participation in our Urbino program, jointly sponsored by James Madison University and Iowa State University. The winner will work with two award-winning photojournalists in an experiential program that runs through the month of June 2015. The recipient is responsible for his/her own airfare.
To enter the competition you must submit a link to an online photographic portfolio as well as a short letter explaining why an international reporting experience is important for your education. The portfolio should be well organized and show evidence of curiosity about other groups or cultures. The letter should not exceed 300 words. The judging will be done by a jury of professional photojournalists including former White House Photographer and Washington Post staff photographer Susan Biddle as well as Pulitzer Prize-winning photographer Dennis Chamberlin.
Deadline for submissions: February 1, 2015
People are aware that undergraduate tuition is usually supported by government and university financial aid and loans. They don’t realize that little support is available for summer study abroad. That’s why students seeking funds will need to reach out to family, friends, and various organizations.
What drives costs for summer study abroad programs? First, there is the variable of the foreign currency exchange rate. But the following fixed components are the main ones to consider while seeking outside support:
5. Airfare (usually not included in program fee)
6. Independent travel
7. Administrative overhead (facilities, insurance, etc)
8. Credits and fees
The cost of credits and associated fees, items 7 and 8, varies among institutions and usually doesn’t fit into an appeal for financial assistance because it is not relevant to being abroad. But a case can be made for the other items.
Summer study abroad must contend with higher prices when programs are located in popular tourist destinations, which affects items 1, 2, 5, and 6. Housing, meals, and airfare can easily be separated into distinct funding appeals, when a single source for all cannot be identified.
Programs that are transplanted lecture/discussion courses (with field trips) may have only one professor and 15 to 20 students, resulting in a lower cost. Experiential courses, like those offered by ieiMedia, may be more costly because the student-faculty ratio may be 3 or 4 to one. This is a special circumstance that may be cited in any appeal for funds.
There are many local merchants, community, religious (including parishes) and ethnic organizations that will assist students in special projects, like studying abroad, provided students describe their purpose in terms that would appeal to the donor.
In some cases, a student may approach potential donors with mass mailings, but where possible an individualized email or letter will work best, especially when contacting family and friends. The most effective communications will be personal, a letter that will communicate your passion for the proposed project. Break the project down into fundable units. For instance, if meals will cost $25 per day, seek a commitment for a certain number of days. And the donors should be promised some response upon the student’s return.
If a student needs to take out a loan to attend, a powerful appeal can be based on helping the student to avoid this additional debt or pay off the debt…all because the program is that important to his or her education or career.
Victoria Mita of FundMyTravel says it well: “I’m not rich but I studied abroad. So can you, if you really want to!”
In a post on The Traveling Advisor, Victoria sums up the various ways of finding cash to study abroad, from “old school” methods like bake sales and yard work to “new school” means like crowdfunding, as in FundMyTravel and ProjectTravel.
And, of course, there are scholarships. These three organizations offer complete lists of scholarships, grants, loans, and paid internships for students seeking to study in another country:
Taylor Gilman, a journalism major and political science minor at the Denver university, was thrilled to learn about the scholarship from the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program.
“Winning this scholarship is an opportunity for me to do something extraordinary,” Gilman, 19, said in an email interview. “Studying abroad is something that always seemed out of my reach, but now it’s finally happening.”
The Gilman Scholarship Program is open to American undergraduate students who are planning to study abroad. The program “aims to diversify the kinds of students who study abroad and the countries and regions where they go by supporting undergraduates who might otherwise not participate due to financial constraints,” according to the program’s website.
Gilman (no relation to the scholarship’s namesake) is originally from Glenwood Springs, Colo., and is an enrolled member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.
“I chose the Istanbul project because I like how Turkey is a destination that not many students choose when studying abroad. I am also excited about the multimedia aspect of the program. I am very interested in photojournalism and the illumination of the human condition through photography. Even though I will only be in Istanbul for four weeks, I hope that I can shed at least a little light and truth on a culture so different from my own through images.”
Gilman is one of eight undergraduate students studying in ieiMedia’s international reporting program in Turkey this summer. Seven recent graduates and grad students will intern there with ieiMedia’s internship program.
“It’s a weird sensation how I feel,” Gilman said. “I have never been more excited or terrified in my entire life.”
For more information about scholarships for Canadian students go to CFHU’s scholarships web page or contact:
National Director, Student & Academic Affairs
Canadian Friends of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Applications for the Jerusalem program are due March 30, 2013.
The Rothberg International School at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem has generously offered scholarships for students enrolled in ieiMedia’s international reporting program in Jerusalem.
Scholarships will be for $750. Students who have already filled out a FAFSA form are eligible to receive an additional $250, for a total scholarship of $1,000 toward the cost of the program. The scholarships are available to U.S. citizens and students of other nationalities who are enrolled in an American college or university.
To apply for one of the scholarships, send an email to Ilene Prusher at lprusher@ieiMedia.com with your name, email address and phone number and state whether you are applying for just the $750 scholarship or the additional $250 need-based scholarship as well. Students applying for a need-based scholarship will need to add the Hebrew University code of G04012 to their FAFSA application.
The application deadline for the Jerusalem program is Feb. 15. The online application for all ieiMedia programs is available on the ieiMedia website. Scholarships will be given to the first 15 students who apply for the program AND the scholarship so don’t delay!
For more information, contact Ilene Prusher at lprusher@ieiMedia.com or 415 338-3134.
Students seeking financial support for ieiMedia summer study-abroad programs may want to check out their local press club scholarship programs. Many press clubs offer scholarships for journalism and communication students and those preparing for a career in journalism. Here’s a list of some of the many opportunities available:
The National Press Club offers several scholarships, including the Scholarship for Journalism Diversity, the Feldman Fellowship for Graduate Studies in Journalism, and the Richard G. Zimmerman Journalism Scholarship, for high school seniors who wish to pursue a career in journalism.
Deadline: March 1
The Sacramento Press Club offers a total of $34,000 in assistance to students who are preparing for a career in journalism or a closely related field. The seven scholarships range in value from $4,000 to $8,000.
Deadline: April 5
Deadline: Contact the sponsoring organization
The Big Island Press Club annually offers the $500 Jack Markey Memorial Scholarship and the $1,500 Robert C. Miller Memorial Scholarship and administers the $500 Yukino Fukubori Memorial Scholarship, the $1,000 Bill Arballo Scholarship and the Marcia Reynolds Memorial Scholarship. All are awarded to qualified students working toward a career in journalism or a related field.
Deadline: June 9
The Idaho Press Club awards the $1,500 Don Watkins Scholarship each year to graduates of Idaho high schools who have completed one year of college and wish to pursue a career in journalism or communications. Full-time students majoring in journalism or working for a college or professional media outlet are eligible.
The Valley Press Club in Springfield, Massachusetts offers five $1,000 scholarships to students planning to study journalism in college.
The Press Club of Metropolitan St. Louis and the Journalism Foundation award a variety of scholarships for communication students. These scholarships include the Press Club’s $5,000 media scholarship for students pursuing careers in print, broadcast or digital journalism careers; many summer internship $1,000 scholarships for communication students; a Press Club internship $1,000 scholarship each semester; the Press Club and St. Louis Post-Dispatch David Lipman scholarship for $5,000 awarded through the Missouri School of Journalism to a journalism student at the University of Missouri-Columbia; a $1,000 Sky’s the Limit scholarship awarded through Mathew-Dickey Boys’ and Girls’ Club; and up to 13 different Journalism Foundation scholarships ranging in amounts from $500 to $1500 provided by other professional communication organizations through the Press Club.
Deadline: May 3
The New York Press Club Foundation began offering journalism scholarships in 2012. Details for 2013 were not available.
The Press Club of Western Pennsylvania offers a $5,000 Bob Fryer Memorial Scholarship to aspiring journalists.
Deadline: Extended to Feb. 1
The Press Club serving the Philadelphia suburbs offers four scholarships to students pursuing fields in writing and communications.
Deadline: Contact the sponsoring organization
Women’s Press Club of Pittsburgh offers scholarships to students who are interns or occasional stringers to professional media organizations or student media staff members.
Deadline: Contact the sponsoring organization
The Press Club Of Dallas Foundation Scholarship Fund awards one or more one-year scholarships up to a total of $15,000 to current college students who have graduated from a high school in the DFW Metroplex, completed at least 45 hours of collegiate coursework, and are currently pursuing a college degree in the communications field, to include print and broadcast journalism, public relations and advertising.
Deadline: Contact the sponsoring organization
The Milwaukee Press Club each year provides scholarship money to Marquette University, the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. At each of those schools, representatives select a student to receive the scholarship.
Deadline: Contact the schools listed above.
Don’t see your region or state listed here? Many other press clubs offer scholarships to students interested in pursuing a degree or a career in journalism. Search for your city or state and “press club” to get contact for your local, regional or statewide press club.
We will continue to update this list as we learn about more press club scholarships. If you know about others that should be listed here please write to rkanigel (at) ieimedia (dot) com.
OTHER JOURNALISM SCHOLARSHIPS
National Association of Black Journalists awards scholarships annually to deserving students interested in pursuing careers in journalism. Scholarships are worth up to $2,500.
Deadline: Feb. 28
ieiMedia Blog: Browse Topics
Latest Blog Posts
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- Meet with ieiMedia in Atlanta, Washington and California
- What makes a good travel writer? Meeting readers’ needs for humanity
- Apply by Oct. 4 to be one of 2,800 winners of a Gilman scholarship for study abroad
- ieiMedia announces new executive director, 2017 sites
- Urbino students convey stories through multimedia
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Our Students Get Great Gigs
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- Jerusalem Project – 2013
- Istanbul Project – 2015
- Istanbul Project – 2014
- Istanbul Project – 2013
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by Amira Zubairi, Ryerson University, Istanbul Project 2015