This semester, two Colorado State University students have been awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship to help fund their international education experiences.
Julia Lyons received $5,000 to study in New Zealand, and Lindsey Berger received $3,000 to study in the Czech Republic. The Gilman Scholarship Program, funded by the U.S. Department of State, provides financial support to U.S. citizens who wish to pursue academic and career development experiences around the world.
Julia Lyons, a senior interior design major, is studying at Auckland University of Technology in New Zealand. She has looked forward to studying abroad since arriving at CSU. Her interest in community development and advice from her advisor pushed her to move forward with her travel goals.
“The Gilman Scholarship was recommended to me by my advisor, who had a previous interior design student receive it,” said Lyons. “The financial support that the Gilman Scholarship has granted me has propelled my dreams into a reality.”
The interior design program at Auckland is credit approved at Colorado State, but Lyons hopes it will go beyond fulfilling graduation requirements.
“I want to invest my skills and talents in a profession that serves disadvantaged populations, and it is very important to me that my secondary education prepares me to enter this nonprofit field of work,” said Lyons.
Lyons chose New Zealand for its vibrant cultural heritage, active presence of indigenous peoples and the great diversity of peers she’ll be able to cooperate and grow with.
Junior Lindsey Berger, an interdisciplinary liberal arts and communication studies major, is studying at the University of Economics in Prague, through the Central and East European Studies Program.
Berger chose the Czech Republic for its rich Jewish history. In her hometown of Los Angeles, her mother works with elderly holocaust survivors at the L.A. Jewish Community Center, with whom she has also been able to meet and connect. It was there that she met a survivor who became her mentor and inspired her to explore their shared heritage in Europe.
While abroad, she hopes to visit the Jewish Museum and cemetery in Prague, Terezin Concentration Camp, and the many synagogues in the Czech Republic. Upon her return, Berger plans to return to the JCC to give a presentation on modern-day Czech culture and Jewish history through photography.
Scholarships and support
Throughout the academic year, Education Abroad partners with the Office of Financial Aid to offer financial aid advising and workshops for students who are considering going abroad on study, research, internship and service-learning programs. More than $450,000 in scholarships and discounts are available to CSU students participating in an education abroad program, with the average scholarship recipient receiving $2,775.
As part of the Office of International Programs, CSU Education Abroad oversees programs in nearly every country around the world and provides support services to students, including advising, orientations, outreach, program coordination and risk management oversight.