Brandeis students go away with Gilman Scholarships

Five Brandeis undergraduates are among the 700 students selected by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs to receive a Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, which provides up to $5,000 that can be applied to study-abroad costs.
Karen Brier, Yuki Wiland, Heather Yoon, Jenny Chen and Emily Huang, all from the Class of 2015, are the university’s Gilman Scholarship recipients. The students will travel to South Africa (Brier), Thailand (Wiland), Chile (Chen) and Denmark (Huang) during the upcoming spring semester. Yoon will study on Brandeis' own program, Brandeis in The Hague.
The Gilman program aims to diversify both the students who study abroad and the countries in which they study. Scholarship recipients gain experiences that prepare them for leadership roles within government and private sectors.
Benjamin A. Gilman, for whom the program is named and who retired in 2002 after serving 30 years in the U.S. House of Representatives, says, "Living and learning in the vastly different environment of another nation not only exposes our students to alternate views but also adds an enriching social and cultural experience. It also provides our students with the opportunity to return home with a deeper understanding of their place in the world, encouraging them to be a contributor rather than a spectator in the international community."
"I've always loved to travel, so even before I attended Brandeis I knew I would want to study abroad," says Brier. "My choice to go to South Africa was fairly spontaneous after I realized I could study anywhere in the world."
Wiland says, “I love traveling and experiencing new cultures. I also really value hands-on learning. There is so much more you can get by practice than from a textbook. The study I’ll be doing in Thailand fits right in with Brandeis’ Health: Science, Society and Policy program and includes a practicum where I can do research.”
“I hope to become a truly global citizen,” says Yoon. “The Gilman Scholarship will allow me to take advantage of the great resources in The Hague and opportunities to intern and research issues on gender equity and human trafficking without the distraction of financial concerns.”
Says Chen, “I've always been interested in becoming a global citizen, and I’ve always loved learning about different cultures, especially trying different cuisines, so studying abroad seemed like the perfect opportunity to better integrate myself into the global community.”

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