Clark has been recognized today by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs as a 20-year “Top Producer” of Gilman Scholars. Clark was one of 20 small colleges and universities recognized for its support of equity, diversity, and accessibility in study abroad for American students; since 2001, 53 Clark undergraduates have studied or traveled abroad with funding from the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program.
“We are so proud of, and grateful for, this recognition from the State Department,” said Alissa Kramer Briggs, director of the Office of Study Abroad and Away Programs, the Clark office that administers the scholarship competition.
“We know how important study abroad is for students’ academic progress, job prospects, and personal growth,” Briggs continued. “Despite the recent challenges presented by COVID-19, we are humbled to be able to support students from diverse backgrounds and a range of academic disciplines in having a global experience anywhere in the world. Promoting funding opportunities and international education for all students at Clark remains a top priority and the Gilman has been an excellent partner in helping us reach our goals.”
Between 50 and 70 percent of Clark students who apply for the Gilman Scholarships receive them, compared with 23 percent of applicants nationwide.
Emily Braddock ’22 used a Gilman Scholarship this summer to enroll in an intensive online Hindi language course offered through the School for International Training (SIT); her classes were taught by faculty based in Jaipur, India. Braddock had originally planned to study abroad in Thailand, but COVID-19 restrictions changed her trajectory and pointed her back to India, where she had done a six-week gap year program before arriving at Clark.
“Those six weeks were the initial catalyzing force that made me seek out learning Hindi,” wrote Braddock. “I also really want to go to India again, hopefully to intern for an organization that’s doing work related to food-sovereignty or climate. Learning Hindi seemed like a logical next step in this plan.”
Colleges and universities in 27 states, plus Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C., as well as 33 minority-serving institutions, were recognized for being 20-year Top Producers of Gilman Scholars. The State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, in collaboration with the Institute of International Education, compiled lists of these institutions, and organized them by size and degree-awarding categories.
Throughout its 20-year history, the Department of State’s Gilman Program has reshaped study abroad to make it more accessible and inclusive for American students by providing scholarships to outstanding U.S. undergraduate students who, due to financial constraints, might not otherwise participate. Since the program’s inception in 2001, more than 34,000 Gilman Scholars from all U.S. states, Puerto Rico, and other U.S. territories have studied or interned in more than 155 countries around the globe.
Read about Clark students who have traveled and studied abroad with the help of Gilman Scholarships and other prestigious fellowships »