Study Abroad

Raquel Ogletree

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 Raquel Ogletree
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.

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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