South Korea, Spring 2019
“Take the chance. You’ll never know unless you try.”
I am a low-income student that was able to study abroad without taking any loans out. I know being a low-income student, sometimes you think you can’t do certain activities because you just can’t afford it. I know that feeling because I also had to think about how I was going to get enough money to survive for a whole semester while being abroad. There would be many times when I would panic and just decide not to study abroad, but hearing others’ experiences really motivated me to try and do whatever I could to study abroad. So, I would think to myself, “What’s another way to get free money without having to pay it back? Ah, scholarships.” Thankfully, the Office of National Scholarships helped me a lot when it came to applying for scholarships. I ended up applying for the Gilman Scholarship. Now, it’s not easy getting a scholarship, but if your heart is in it and you have the motivation to write a good essay, you have a pretty good chance. You might panic and think, “What if I’m not good enough? How is someone like me supposed to get a scholarship?” Don’t panic. Take the chance. You’ll never know unless you try.
The Office of National Scholarships has advisors that are going to help you with your application to make sure it’s the best it can be. I will always be grateful to Lauren Roberts, who helped me with the Gilman Scholarship when I was applying, I struggle a lot with my writing, and she really made my writing come alive (and look more formal.) The sooner you decide to apply for a study abroad program, the more time you will have to breath and plan accordingly. Don’t just apply for scholarships. Set aside some money every month and save a little of that financial aid money you get back each semester. That, combined with a scholarship, can make a huge difference on your experience once you study abroad. Apply for multiple scholarships too. What’s better than getting one scholarship is getting multiple. Take the chance, apply for a scholarship, save some money, work for some money, and then fly across the world and have the time of your life.
Tags: Finances, Fear, Gilman Application Process