The UofM Study Abroad Office has created the Passport Initiative, which aims to help low-income students obtain their first passport, eliminating one of the up-front cost barriers to study abroad. The $15,000 initiative creates $150 Passport Scholarships for 100 low-income students.
To obtain the $150 Passport Scholarship, students will submit a completed passport application at the Spring 2018 Study Abroad Fair on Wednesday, Jan. 24, 2018, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in the Rose Theatre, along with a Passport Scholarship Voucher Form. The first qualifying 100 students who submit these items will be awarded a Passport Scholarship in the amount of $150, reimbursing students the cost of obtaining a passport. No study abroad commitment is required for students to receive the Passport Scholarship.
Representatives of the Charleston, S.C., Passport Center will be at the Study Abroad Fair reviewing and accepting the passport applications. No appointments will be necessary to submit a passport application. The UofM encourages all students, faculty, staff and community members to attend the Study Abroad Fair to submit their passport applications, as anyone may apply for their passport at the fair.
The UofM Center for International Education Services (CIES), in partnership with the TRiO program and the Benjamin L. Hooks Institute for Social Change, is launching the Study Abroad Access Initiative (SAAI).
Students have often been discouraged from pursuing study abroad due to the upfront costs of applying for a passport and purchasing a round-trip international flight. The goal of SAAI is to encourage student populations that are traditionally underrepresented in study abroad to participate in an international education experience by eliminating those financial barriers.
Both the TRiO program and the Hooks Institute's African-American Male Initiative (HAAMI) focus on improving the retention and graduation rates at the UofM by enriching each student's academic, personal and social development. Through the SAAI initiative, active members of TRiO and HAAMI can apply to receive up to $2,000 to supplement the cost of a passport and a round-trip international flight that is associated with a UofM study abroad program.
Rorie Trammel, assistant director of the Hooks Institute and coordinator for the HAAMI program, said, "We are grateful and excited that the Center for International Education Services has initiated this unique partnership. The SAAI Initiative will give HAAMI members an outstanding opportunity to broaden their educational experience as UofM students through study abroad."
The SAAI is a pilot program. If successful, the CIES hopes to collaborate with other offices on campus that serve underrepresented student populations in the future.
University of Memphis Students Receive Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship for Study Abroad
The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program offers scholarships for U.S. citizen undergraduate students of limited financial means to pursue academic studies or credit-bearing, career-oriented internships abroad. The Gilman Scholarship Program received more than 3,400 applications and over 1,000 outstanding students were offered awards to study abroad and participate in international internships this summer.
Congratulations to the following University of Memphis recipients of the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship for Study Abroad:
Carly Dunn (Japan)
Allen Dorris (Japan)
Fall 2017/Academic Year 2017-2018
Johnny Ballard (Japan)
Douglas Graham (Japan)
Gary Pledge (Argentina)
Aidan Sawyer (Japan)
Miyah Woodgett (Thailand)