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School Record-Tying 5 UTC Students Land Gilman International Scholarships

  • Wednesday, May 15, 2024
Pictured, from left, are UTC Gilman Scholarship recipients Ashlyn Roberson, Bailee Fiste, Bryce Sanders, Kamila Vargas and Kylie Knott
Pictured, from left, are UTC Gilman Scholarship recipients Ashlyn Roberson, Bailee Fiste, Bryce Sanders, Kamila Vargas and Kylie Knott
Five University of Tennessee at Chattanooga students will get the opportunity to study overseas after being selected as recipients of the nationally competitive Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship.
 
The U.S. Department of State’s Gilman Scholarship Program was created to enable students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, providing them with skills critical to national security and economic prosperity. To be eligible for the Gilman Program, applicants must be receiving a Federal Pell Grant during the time of application or provide proof that they will be receiving a Pell Grant during the term of their study abroad program or internship.
The Institute of International Education has administered the program since its inception in 2001.
 
The five UTC students receiving Gilman Scholarships:

• Rising junior Ashlyn Roberson, majoring in both Spanish and integrated studies (art history and philosophy), will spend the fall 2024 semester at the University of Salamanca in Spain after landing the John S. McCain International Scholarship for Military Families (Gilman-McCain Scholarship)—which awards $5,000 for dependents of U.S. military personnel. She is a 2022 graduate of Ringgold (Georgia) High School.
• Rising junior Bailee Fiste will be heading to Japan. Ms. Fiste, majoring in humanities: international studies with a minor in communication, came to UTC from Sparta, Tennessee. She attended White County High School, where she was salutatorian in 2022.
• Rising senior Bryce Sanders will be traveling to Europe to visit the United Kingdom, Germany and Austria. Mr. Sanders, who attended Lawrence County High School in Lawrenceburg, Tennessee, is majoring in psychology with minors in criminal justice and sociology.
• Rising junior Kamila Vargas will be studying at the University of Alcalá in Spain. Ms. Vargas, a Brock Scholar in the UTC Honors College, is majoring in nursing with a minor in Spanish. She is a graduate of Cocke County High School in Newport, Tennessee.
• Rising senior Kylie Knott will spend six weeks in Florence, Italy. Ms. Knott, who is majoring in psychology with a minor in sociology, plans to pursue a career in art therapy. She is a graduate of Independence High School in Thompson’s Station, Tennessee.

"The significance of the Gilman Scholarship, named after former Congressman Benjamin A. Gilman—a staunch advocate for international education—lies in its ability to make global experiences accessible to a broader range of students. By covering travel, tuition and living expenses, the scholarship removes financial obstacles and allows recipients to immerse themselves in new cultures, languages and academic pursuits," officials said.
 
“Studying abroad can be a transformative experience,” said Dr. Trey Straussberger, director of the UTC Office of National Scholarships. “Many students who haven’t left the region are able to go overseas and experience a different culture, live in a different country and study at a different university. It can have lasting impacts.”
 
Dr. Straussberger said this is only the second time that five UTC students were selected for Gilman Scholarships in the same cycle.
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