Access the Gilman Scholarship Program's online Advisor Portal to create or modify your advisor account, review and certify applications, and order outreach materials.
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Q. Who is eligible for the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program?
A. To be eligible for the Gilman Scholarship Program students must be U.S. citizen undergraduate students who are currently enrolled in an accredited institution of higher education in the U.S. All applicants must be receiving a Federal Pell Grant at the time of application or provide proof that they will be receiving a Pell Grant during the term of study abroad. Students must be applying to a study abroad program eligible for undergraduate academic credit at their home university. Gilman Scholarship recipients can only receive the scholarship once. If a student previously declined the Gilman Scholarship, they are welcome to re-apply, as long as they still meet all eligibility requirements. For more information, please access the Eligibility page of the Gilman website.
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Q. What is a Federal Pell Grant?
A. A Federal Pell Grant is a form of federal financial aid that students apply for via the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If your students are unsure if they are receiving a Pell Grant, please ask them to contact their financial aid advisor to confirm their aid status. For more information on the Pell Grant and other types of Federal Financial Aid, students can access the Student Guide to Federal Financial Aid.
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Q. What study abroad programs are eligible for the Gilman Scholarship Program?
A. Any study abroad program that is eligible for undergraduate academic credit is eligible for the Gilman Scholarship Program and complies with the eligible host countries. This includes, but is not limited to, university or program provider administered study abroad programs, credit-bearing service-learning programs, academic internship programs, student teaching abroad programs, and programs that combine field or other research, etc. If you have a question concerning a program's eligibility, please contact the Gilman Scholarship Program directly.
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Q. How long does the program have to be? Are summer study abroad programs eligible?
A. To be eligible for the Gilman Scholarship Program, programs must fall within the eligible start date range for each application cycle and be a minimum of four weeks in length. Short-term study abroad programs that are at least four weeks long are eligible so long as they fall within the academic year. Generally this means winter intersession or January term programs and students attending these programs would apply during the Spring application cycle.
A limited number of scholarships for summer programs are available during the summer application cycle to students from all majors who meet the program's standard eligibility criteria.
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Q. Are multi-country programs eligible?
A. Yes, multi-country programs are eligible as long as students will spend a minimum of four weeks in one country and all countries in the program are not under a Travel Warning or are not Cuba. Within the application, students should list the countries that are part of the academic program and not the independent traveling they plan to include in their study abroad experience.
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Q. What if a student wants to apply to two separate study abroad programs in two separate countries for two different academic terms? What should they do?
A. In this case students should apply for the program that starts first and coincides with the open application cycle. This is in the student’s best interest so if they don't receive a Gilman Scholarship for their first program, they may reapply for their next semester abroad. Students may only submit one application per cycle. Students may only receive the Gilman Scholarship once. Therefore, if they were previously not selected or declined the scholarship, they may re-apply for a Gilman Scholarship.
For example, if students are planning on spending one semester in Spain and one semester in Argentina, they would first apply for the semester in Spain. Should they not be selected to receive the Gilman Scholarship for that program, then they may reapply during the next application cycle for their program in Argentina. They will just need to indicate within their application that they are currently studying abroad in Spain. If a student has questions regarding their eligibility, please contact the Gilman office directly.
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Students who are already participating in a study abroad program while applying for a Gilman Scholarship for their next academic term should indicate they are only abroad for a semester and not an academic year, since the study abroad program data in the application should reflect the academic term they would receive the Gilman Scholarship. The student can further discuss their current term abroad in the Statement of Purpose essay.
Q. What if a student is planning on participating in two separate programs in the same country? How do they apply then?
A. The Gilman Program allows only one study abroad program per application and one application per cycle. In this case students should submit their first choice program in their application, for which they may be awarded and use the Gilman Scholarship. The student may address their comprehensive study abroad program plans in their Statement of Purpose essay. The program start and end dates would only pertain to that one program.
To help students find other study abroad scholarships to increase their chances of receiving funding to assist them with both programs, visit the Gilman website’s Other Study Abroad Resources.
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Q. What types of students receive the Gilman Scholarship?
A. The Gilman Scholarship Program aims to broaden the student population that studies abroad by supporting undergraduates who have been traditionally under-represented and those who might otherwise not participate due to financial constraints. This includes, but is not limited to, students studying in non-traditional locations, community college students, students of diverse ethnic backgrounds, students representing a diverse range of institutions and institutional types, first-generation college students, and students with disabilities.
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Q. What if my student is applying to study in Western Europe, Australia or New Zealand; should I still encourage them to apply?
A. Yes! The Gilman Scholarship Program would encourage all eligible students to apply for this scholarship. As we advise students, if you apply you at least have a chance of receiving up to $5,000 to help fund your study abroad program. If you don't apply, you will definitely receive nothing. The Gilman Scholarship Program does accept applications and grants awards to students studying in traditional locations such as Western Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Canada. However, the Gilman Scholarship Program strongly encourages students to consider studying outside of these traditional locations and we advise students to utilize resources such as IIE Passport that allow them to search for programs by their field of study and/or desired country of study. As we advise applicants, if you are one of 123 applications for Spain or one of only 17 applications for Argentina, it is much easier for the students applying for Argentina to stand out from the pack in a competitive selection process and, after awhile, all the applications for Spain, the UK or other traditional locations start to sound very similar. You may wish to review the list of applicants and recipients by country on the Statistics page of the Gilman website.
When applying to traditional locations, students should be careful to clearly explain their choice of program and country and how this links with their academic and future professional goals. Selection panels are looking to see that the student has selected the program that meets both of these needs and, as this is a scholarship for academic study abroad, students should focus on the academic aspects of their program. How does this program match their field for study? For example, it may not seem to make sense to the selection panels why a Spanish major focusing on economic development issues would choose to study in Spain, when there are likely programs better suited to their academic goals in Latin America. By clearly addressing why they have chosen their program in their Statement of Purpose essay, students may help address these questions/concerns for the selection panels.
In addition, please encourage students applying to traditional locations, such as Western Europe, to refrain from focusing too much on the travel and vacation opportunities that this, or study in any other region, can provide during breaks or upon the completion of their program. While these opportunities do exist, students should not focus on vacation or travel opportunities in their application essays as this is a scholarship for academic study abroad. Rather, they should focus on the opportunities specifically provided by their study abroad program and location such as internships, volunteer opportunities, research opportunities, home-stays, extra-curricular activities, etc.
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Q. After reviewing the Selection Criteria, one can see that preference is given to longer-term study abroad programs. How then does a student going on a short-term program compete for the Gilman Scholarship Program?
A. Preference is given to longer term study abroad, however students applying for short-term programs of four to eight weeks are still competitive to receive a Gilman Scholarship. It is quite common for students applying for short-term programs to fall within other under-represented categories such as community college students, student parents, and or students in under-represented fields of study such as the sciences, technology, engineering or mathematics. These, or other factors, may make it difficult for students to study abroad for longer durations of time, thus making a short-term program during the academic year a feasible option for international study.
These students will need to clearly explain their length of program within their Statement of Purpose essay. The Statement of Purpose essay is an opportunity for applicants to share with the selection panelists the academic and personal reasons behind their choice of program and program length.
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Q. Does the Gilman Scholarship Program support students of diverse ethnic backgrounds?
A. Yes, the Gilman Scholarship Program strongly encourages students of diverse ethnic backgrounds to apply for the Gilman Scholarship. These students are traditionally under-represented in U.S. study abroad numbers, and this program aims to increase the diversity of Gilman Scholarship recipients by first increasing the diversity of Gilman Scholarship applicants. Over the course of ten years the Gilman Scholarship has provided funding for study abroad, 15% of Gilman Scholarship recipients listed their ethnicity as African-American. Nationally, as reported by Open Doors, only 4% of students who studied abroad in this ten year time period were African-American. However, students and advisors should be sure to note that the ethnicity question in the Gilman Scholarship application is optional and only used for statistical purposes. The selection panels are not provided with a student's response to this question. Thus, the only way a selection panelist would know the ethnicity of a student is if the student chooses to self-declare this within their Statement of Purpose or Follow-on Service Project Proposal. For more information on the ethnic breakdown of Gilman Scholarship applicants and recipients please access the Statistics page.
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Q. What suggestions can you give me on how to advise and review my student's Statement of Purpose essay for the Gilman Scholarship Program?
A. When advising students on their Statement of Purpose essay, it is helpful to encourage them to think of and address the impact that their study abroad program will have on their academic, professional and personal goals. They should also think of and address the impact that receiving the Gilman Scholarship would have on their achievement of these goals.
Some key ideas to have your students keep in mind are:
What impact will this study abroad program and receiving the Gilman Scholarship have on my academic goals? Will I be able to take coursework abroad towards my major or minor requirements? Will I be able to take electives or pursue further language training not available to me on my home campus? How will this study abroad program impact any future academic goals, such as obtaining a graduate degree that I may have?
What impact will my choice of country have on my experience abroad? What initially inspired me to want to study abroad in this particular country or learn this language? What factors led to my choice of country of study?
What impact will my choice of program have on my experience abroad? Are there unique components, such as home-stays, that will impact my experience abroad?
What impact will this study abroad program and receiving the Gilman Scholarship have on my professional goals? How does my study abroad program relate to my future professional goals? Will I be able to pursue internship or volunteer opportunities that support my overall career goals? Will I be able to learn skills or conduct research that will be necessary to me in my future career?
What impact will this study abroad program and receiving the Gilman Scholarship have on me personally? On a personal level, what initially inspired me to want to study abroad and what challenges (such as being a non-traditional student, a student-parent, having a disability, etc.) have I faced in planning to study abroad? How have I met and/or addressed these challenges and what impact will they have on my study abroad experience?
In addition to addressing the above key ideas in their essays, all Gilman Scholarship applicants should have their Statement of Purpose and Follow-on Project Proposal essays proofread by an advisor prior to submitting their application online. Failure to have an application proofread can lead to some common errors and mistakes such as the spelling error 'study aboard' being missed by spell check alone. In addition, essays that are not proofread tend to not be very competitive during the selection process, and thus reduce a student's overall chance of receiving a Gilman Scholarship.
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Q. What about the Follow-on Service Project? What is this and how do I advise my students on their Follow-on Service Project Proposal essay?
A. To help expand the impact of the Gilman Scholarship Program, all Gilman Scholars are required to carry out a follow-on service project upon their return from abroad that helps to promote international education and the Gilman Scholarship Program. This project can be done on the student's home campus or in their local community and must be completed within six months of their return home. All applicants must submit a project proposal within their application and this proposal is closely reviewed during the selection process. When preparing their project proposal Gilman applicants should keep these questions in mind:
Who is my target audience and how do I plan on reaching this population? Will I carry out this project on my campus or in my local community? What impact will my project have on this group and how will my project interest my target population in international education and encourage them to apply for the Gilman Scholarship Program?
How will I inform my target audience of my project? What arrangements will I need to make to publicize my project? For example, will I post notices to all Pell Grant recipients on campus via email or send invitations to members of a specific campus population?
Are there already established campus or community organizations, offices, student groups or networks that I can utilize in reaching out to my target audience? How will working with these groups/offices help benefit and expand the impact that my project will have?
What is the timeline for my project and how will this impact my target audience? For example, will I return in time to present at a campus study abroad fair or if your project involves working with a local K-12 classroom, will that school be in session when you return and are completing your project?
How will I carry out my project? Are there methods I can utilize, such as PowerPoint presentations, websites, slide shows, photos, etc., that can assist me in achieving my project goals and reaching my target audience? What impact will the methods I use have on my audience?
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Q. Can you give me any examples of Follow-on Service Projects that Gilman Scholarship Recipients have done?
A. Gilman Scholars have proposed and carried out a wide range of follow-on service projects. Each cycle, a variety of follow-on service projects are submitted and there is no right or wrong proposals. We encourage all applicants to propose a unique project that highlights their individual background, experiences abroad, talents and skills. Below we have listed some examples of the types of projects Gilman Scholars have carried out. This is by no means an exhaustive list and we look forward to continue to receive unique, individual proposals from all applicants.
Some examples of Follow-on Service Projects include:
Some students prefer to focus on encouraging students to consider study abroad opportunities early in their academic career. These projects are highly beneficial as the spark that encourages us to consider studying in another country is often something we have encountered regarding that country or region of the world at a very young age. For example, a student who has always been interested in and dreamed of going to China ever since seeing the movie 'Big Bird Goes to China' as a young child decides to pursue a study abroad program in Beijing for a semester. These types of projects are often also a great fit for education majors or other students who plan professional careers that focus on children.
Some projects Gilman Scholars have carried out include:
a. Conducting presentations on their country of study to local classrooms;
b. Working with a local teacher to incorporate study of a specific country into the curriculum through photos, letters and emails from the Gilman Scholar while they are abroad and everyday items the student brings back with them from their host country (i.e. newspapers, menus, magazines, clothing, textbooks, toys, etc.);
c. Organizing a pen-pal program between a local classroom and a classroom in the student's host country;
d. Organizing and/or working with their university K-12 outreach program, bringing international students into local classrooms to present and share information on their home countries;
e. Participating in their local high school College Night to share information on study abroad opportunities and scholarships such as the Gilman Scholarship Program;
f. Working with/giving presentations on study abroad to local high school language or area studies classes;
g. Working with/giving presentations on study abroad and scholarships to programs that mentor at-risk high school students such as the Upward Bound program.
- Academic Department Outreach: Students in fields of study traditionally under-represented in U.S. study abroad often choose to focus on their academic department when carrying out their project. Examples of these projects include:
a. Development of a study abroad information page for the department website that lists a suggested academic timeline for study abroad , encouraging students to incorporate study abroad into their degree;
b. Organizing information on university-approved study abroad programs that offer coursework and academic credit in their field of study, and links to scholarships and financial aid information that support these opportunities;
c. Presentations on study abroad at academic club or honor society meetings;
d. Development of a brochure or informational flyer specific to that field of study that is then posted in the study abroad office or academic departmental office;
e. Serving as a mentor/peer advisor to potential study abroad students in their field of study;
f. Submitting an article to their academic department newsletter on their experiences abroad either while the student is still overseas or upon their return.
- Campus Office Outreach: Students often propose to work with a specific on-campus office including the Diversity/Minority Services offices, Disability Services offices, the Financial Aid office, Student-Leadership office, etc. Examples of these projects include:
a. Working with the university office to help promote and encourage study abroad opportunities through presentations to student clubs and organizations and through office organized events;
b. Posting information on the Gilman Scholarship Program in specific campus offices;
c. Adding a web page to the office website that highlights study abroad opportunities and information that would be of help/interest to students utilizing the services of these offices;
d. Serving as an office representative at campus fairs and events by sharing information on study abroad and the
Gilman Scholarship Program.
- Study Abroad Outreach: This is the most common type of follow-on service project students propose. Examples of these projects include:
a. Volunteering or working in the study abroad office as a Peer Mentor/Advisor to potential study abroad students;
b. Representing the study abroad office at presentations/information sessions on study abroad;
c. Ensuring the study abroad office website has a Scholarship Information page and that a link to the Gilman Scholarship Program's website is provided;
d. Submitting an article on their experiences abroad to the Study Abroad office newsletter either while they are still abroad or upon their return;
e. Developing an informational flyer/brochure on university-specific financial aid procedures for study abroad and available scholarships which is then housed in the study abroad office;
f. Participating in/organizing a Study Abroad Alumni society which assists returned and potential study abroad students;
g. Serving as a resource person for a specific country/program/field of study that would advise/assist potential study abroad students.
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- Other Outreach: There are a variety of other types of projects that students have proposed. Some examples include:
a. Submitting a weekly or monthly article on their experiences overseas to their campus or hometown newspaper while the student is abroad, thereby sharing information with a wide range of readers;
b. Submitting an article on their experiences abroad to their campus or hometown paper upon their return to the U.S.;
c. Working/volunteering with a local refugee or immigrant organization thereby utilizing the inter-cultural and language skills they acquired overseas;
d. Working/volunteering as an interpreter with a local organization in need of those skills;
e. Participating in/organizing an on-campus International Student buddy program that links incoming international students with past study abroad students to assist in their adjustment to the U.S. and the university - this may be an especially effective option for those campuses that have exchange programs with a university overseas;
f. Participating in campus or local international events such as an International Fair, Chinese New Year or other celebration;
g. Working with another local organization to share information on study abroad and the country they studied in with their members;
h. Presenting on study abroad opportunities and the Gilman Scholarship Program at Freshman Orientation or in First-Year Experiences courses thereby encouraging students to consider study abroad earlier rather than later in their undergraduate career.
Application Process - How to Apply
Q. How do students apply for the Gilman Scholarship Program and when are the deadlines?
A. Students apply for the Gilman Scholarship Program via an online application that they can access approximately six to eight weeks prior to the application deadline. The online application does have a save and quit option so students may begin their application and come back to complete and submit it at any point prior to the application deadline. However, the Gilman Scholarship Program strongly encourages students to begin and submit their application as soon as possible as this allows them adequate time to compose their essays and have them proofread by an advisor prior to submission. As this is an online system, students do have the possibility of submitting their application as late as midnight central time on the application deadline. However, doing so is risky as there are generally a large number of students trying to submit at this time and should any errors or technical difficulties occur with the submission of their application, there will be no one in the Gilman Scholarship office to assist them. Office hours for the Gilman Scholarship Program are from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. (CST).
There are three application cycles each year for the Gilman Scholarship Program. The fall cycle is for students who begin their study abroad program during the fall term and the spring cycle is for students who begin their study abroad program during the spring and/or winter term. Students participating in programs beginning in their summer academic term can apply during the summer application cycle. Compared to the fall and spring cycles, a limited number of scholarships for summer programs will be available to students.
The Summer 2013 and Fall 2013/AY 2013-2014 online application will open in mid-January 2013 and all online applications are due March 5, 2013 by 11:59pm (CST). For more information, please refer to the Deadlines & Timeline section of the Gilman website.
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Q. What are the advisor certifications and how does this work?
A. All applications for the Gilman Scholarship Program must be certified online by both a financial aid and a study abroad advisor from the student's currently enrolled college or university. The financial aid advisor will verify that the student is currently receiving a Federal Pell Grant or will during the selected study abroad academic term and the estimated amount of financial aid in grants and scholarships that the student may apply to their study abroad program (this excludes loans). The study abroad advisor will verify the study abroad program information provided by the student and that the program they are applying to is an approved, undergraduate credit-eligible program at the student's currently enrolled institution.
Once a student submits their online application, the financial aid and study abroad advisor listed by the student will automatically receive an email. The email will notify advisors that one of their students has submitted an application and reminds them of the given advisor certification deadline.
The deadline for advisors to submit their online approvals will be seven days after the online student deadline. However, we encourage all advisors to submit certifications as quickly as possible. This ensures timely processing of your student's application and allows time for any questions or issues to be addressed as quickly as possible. Students are also responsible for communicating with their certifying advisors to ensure their applications are certified by the deadline.
Please note: The advisors’ certifications are not a place for student recommendations. The purpose of the certifications is solely to confirm information regarding the eligibility of the student and their study abroad program of choice.
Tips for Advisors using the online application (94.9 KB, PDF)
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Q. How do students know who to list as their financial aid or study abroad advisor?
A. Students must select a study abroad advisor and financial aid advisor from a list of certifying advisors from their home institution. In order for an advisor to be listed as a certifying advisor, an advisor must create an account in the online application, http://gilmanapplication.iie.org.
All applicants are advised that prior to submitting their application they should contact both the financial and study abroad office to confirm which advisors they should select in their application.
Tips for Advisors using the online application (94.9 KB, PDF)
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Q. What if I cannot determine my student’s Pell Grant status because their financial aid package is not yet finalized, in review or being re-evaluated?
A. If a student has not yet received his/her financial aid package, then the financial aid advisor should use the student’s previous financial aid award as a preliminary response. Financial aid advisors should then indicate the discrepancy in the “Further Comments” box under the “Advisor Approval” section of the certification page. Additionally, please contact the Gilman Scholarship Program to notify us once the final award has been confirmed.
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Q. What if a student is not currently receiving a Pell grant, but may receive one during the term of his/her study abroad program?
A. If a student is currently not receiving a Federal Pell Grant, but may receive one during the study abroad academic term, then financial aid advisors are encouraged to indicate this in the application. Financial aid advisors may estimate the student’s financial aid award that the student could receive during his/her study abroad term. This may be based on estimating the student’s previous academic year’s financial aid award. Financial aid advisors should then indicate the discrepancy in the “Further Comments” box of the certification page. Additionally, advisors should please contact the Gilman Scholarship Program to notify us once the final award has been confirmed.
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Q. Does this program require letters of recommendation?
A. No. The Gilman Scholarship Program does not require nor do we accept letters of recommendation or other supporting documentation from applicants. Applicants are judged solely based on the information provided in their application and their transcript/s. Advisor certifications do not serve as a place for student recommendations either.
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Q. How and when do students need to submit in their transcripts?
A. The Gilman Scholarship Program requires transcript(s) to accompany the students' application before it can be reviewed by the selection committee and considered for an award. All applicants will need to upload an official transcript from their currently enrolled college or university, as well as either an official or unofficial transcript from any previously enrolled institution listed in their application (this would be their transfer institution in the application). Official transcripts can be opened for the purpose of uploading. Unofficial transcripts may be issued from institutions or web-based from student accounts, but copy and pasted versions are not acceptable. If the applicant is a first-year student and does not have a previous record at their current institution, then they will need to upload their high school transcript or previous institution's transcript along with an enrollment verification letter from their current institution including their in progress courses. Transcripts must be uploaded before the deadline assigned for the current application cycle in order to submit a complete online application. More information and detailed instructions guiding students through the transcript upload process can be found on the Gilman website's Instructions for Uploading Transcripts into the Gilman Online Application and in an instructional video.
Important Reminder: If selected to receive a Gilman Scholarship, the applicant will be required to mail an official transcript from their current institution during the award documentation process.
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Q. When and how will students be notified of the status of their application? Will advisors be notified as well?
A. All applicants for the Gilman Scholarship Program will receive notification of their final status via email upon the conclusion of selection panels. For this reason, it is very important that applicants indicate the best email for communication as their primary email address in their account and application, as well as update the Gilman Scholarship office should their email address change prior to notification. To review the notification dates please access the Deadlines & Timeline for the particular application cycle.
Both the study abroad and financial aid advisors listed who certified the application will be notified via email when the Gilman Scholarship Recipients List is posted on the Gilman website.
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Q. One of my students has been selected as a Gilman Scholarship recipient. What do they/I need to do now?
A. At this point the student will need to follow the instructions contained in the notification email they received regarding accepting the Gilman Scholarship Award they were offered and submitting all required award documentation. They are also advised they should speak with both their financial aid and study abroad advisors regarding the receipt of their Gilman Scholarship.
It is especially important that recipients speak with their financial aid advisor prior to accepting their Gilman Scholarship as receipt of an outside scholarship can sometimes have an impact on the student's overall financial aid package.
The Gilman Scholarship Program would ask advisors to assist recipients, where appropriate, in compiling their required award documentation as indicated on the Award Documentation Checklist. This includes all required documentation forms, proof of U.S. citizenship, proof of compliance with the Fly America Act, proof of acceptance into the study abroad program the student applied for; proof of overseas health insurance, and a photograph (preferably a digital image sent electronically). Recipients will access the Award Documentation Checklist and all other forms online as indicated in their notification email.
All award documentation must be submitted by the student themselves with their electronic signature. All communication regarding award documentation and status will be directed to the individual recipient and due to privacy concerns, no information on the recipient beyond what is posted on the Gilman website will be made available to any other party, including advisors. The only exception to this is if the recipient has given Power-of-Attorney status to another individual. Then, this is the only other person that may also submit and sign award documentation on behalf of the recipient. However, they must first provide the Gilman Scholarship Program with a photocopy of the Power-of-Attorney documentation thereby enabling the Gilman office to communicate with and receive documentation from this individual on their behalf.
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Q. One of my students has been chosen as a recipient of the Gilman Scholarship Program, but they will not be studying abroad this term after all. What do they/I need to do now?
A. Gilman Scholarships must be used for the term of study in which they were awarded. They cannot be held over or deferred to a future term. Thus, if this student will not be studying abroad for the term and program they had applied for, they will need to decline their scholarship award offer. In this case, we would also ask advisors to notify the Gilman Scholarship Program via email that the student will not be participating in the study abroad program they had applied for. The Gilman staff will then confirm this with the student and advise them as to the steps they will need to take to officially decline their scholarship award offer.
This student may reapply for any future cycle of the Gilman Scholarship Program as long as they remain eligible. Their previous application will have no impact on any future application they may wish to make. They will need to submit a new application for that cycle and will be reviewed with the new applicant pool.
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Q. What if my student is still planning to study abroad, but they have changed their program/country of study. What do they/I need to do now?
A. Changes in program and/or country of study are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. Generally, changes within the same country are approved so long as the program is for the same term and duration as that indicated in the original application. Changes in country of study are discouraged as the country of study can play a large part in the overall review and selection process. Where possible, we strongly encourage students to remain in the same world region if a change in country of study is required. If this is not possible, we would ask that the student select a program that has as similar structure and content as that of the original program they had applied for.
Students may request a change in program/country of study by contacting their appropriate Gilman Representative (according to their last name). They will need to explain the reason behind their change in program/country of study and provide the Gilman Scholarship Program with information on their new program of study. Once they submit their program change form, their certifying study abroad and financial aid advisors will receive a notification email from the system informing them to certify the new program information as soon as possible. The Gilman Scholarship Program can begin to review their request once the form has been submitted and certified by both advisors.
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Q. What if the country of study my student has chosen goes on a U.S. Department of State Travel Warning either prior to or while they are abroad?
A. As the Gilman Scholarship Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs no Gilman Scholarship may be awarded to a student studying in a country that is currently under a Travel Warning. If a Travel Warning is issued for the country prior to the departure, the Gilman Scholarship Program will assist the student in finding an alternative location of study abroad. If they are unable to find an alternative location of study abroad for that term they will need to decline their Gilman Scholarship and they will then be able to reapply for a future cycle.
The Gilman Scholarship Program regularly sends Gilman Scholars abroad any updates to Consular Information Sheets, Public Announcements or Travel Warnings for their country of study. It is for this reason that all Gilman Scholars abroad are required to maintain a valid, working email address with the Gilman office and submit the Emergency Contact Information Sheet. Should an emergency arise abroad or a Travel Warning be issued, the Gilman Scholarship Program would use the information contained in the Emergency Contact Information Sheet to contact the recipient or their emergency contacts abroad or within the U.S.
Moreover, all Gilman Scholarship recipients are required to register with the U.S. Embassy in their Country of Study via the online registration system. Should an emergency arise the Embassy will then be able to locate and advise the student further regarding the situation in their country of study. Generally, most universities and/or study abroad programs will require the return of students studying in countries where a Travel Warning has been issued.
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Q. How will the award check be issued and disbursed? Will it be sent directly to the student or to the university?
A. Gilman Scholarship recipients can either have their funds directly deposited into their personal bank account or elect to receive a check. As such, the direct deposit will go directly to the student and the award check will be issued payable to the student only. Scholarship funds cannot be issued or made co-payable to any other individual, organization or institution. However, award checks may be sent in care of another individual, organization or institution located in the U.S.
If a student elects to send a check in care of another individual, organization or institution, the student will first need to ensure arrangements have been made so that they can sign the check over to that individual, organization or institution; or that the individual, organization or institution has the ability to deposit the check to their banking or student account in order for the scholarship recipient to be able to make the necessary program payments. Even if the student indicates the award check is sent in care of another individual, the Gilman office will not be able to communicate any information regarding the recipient or their award status unless they have given this individual Power-of-Attorney status and provided the Gilman office with a photocopy of this documentation. All award checks are sent via U.S. mail to a U.S. address; checks cannot be sent internationally.
Award funds are disbursed directly into the recipient’s personal bank account or via a single check which will be sent to the address the recipient indicates on their Notice of Award. Scholarship funds cannot be requested or issued until all required award documentation has been received by the Gilman Scholarship Program's office. From the date the recipient's documentation file is approved, it will take between two and three weeks for their funds to be deposited or the check to arrive at the address indicated on the Notice of Award.
Students are encouraged to request their scholarship funds be distributed via direct deposit, as this is the most secure and efficient way to receive the funds and be able to access them while abroad. Gilman recipients will need to submit adequate proof of a bank account in their name. It would be in the student’s best interest to have already opened an account prior to receiving an award notification.
Gilman recipients are responsible for any and all financial obligations that arise from participation in their chosen study abroad program. Gilman Scholarship funds can only be used for study abroad related tuition, program fees, room & board, transportation, insurance, and books. Gilman Scholarship funds cannot be used for costs not required by or a part of the study abroad program. Gilman recipients must also comply with the Fly America Act, which does not allow U.S. government funds to be used towards foreign air carriers. Therefore, if a recipient wants to pay for their flight from the U.S. to participate in their study abroad program, they must select a flight through a U.S.-flagged carrier.
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