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MEDIA NOTE
January 17, 2001

State Department Launches Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program

The U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs announces a new study abroad scholarship program for undergraduate students who are receiving financial aid and are citizens or nationals of the United States. The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program will provide scholarships of up to $5,000 for students of limited financial means to pursue study programs outside of the United States for up to one year. A result of the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000, this program aims to broaden the student population studying abroad by focusing on students who might not otherwise be able due to financial constraints.

"The Congress's laudatory initiative in passing this legislation is in keeping with the U.S. government's International Education Policy, which encourages greater diversity in participation in education abroad," said Dr. William B. Bader, Assistant Secretary for Educational and Cultural Affairs. "We expect the $1.5 million allocated by Congress to fund approximately 250 scholarships."

University and college administrators are encouraged to alert potential applicants to this scholarship opportunity, which the Bureau expects will be available during the 2001-2002 academic year.

Further details about specific aspects of the scholarship application process will be available after an administering organization has been selected. The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs will publish a Request for Grant Proposals to administer this scholarship program in this week's Federal Register. Interested organizations must submit proposals by February 26, 2001. Further information is available at the Bureau's list of Open Requests for Grant Proposals at http://exchanges.state.gov/education/rfgps.

For additional information, contact: Amy Forest, U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, phone (202) 619-5548 or e-mail: aforest@pd.state.gov.

Media representatives may contact: Catherine Stearns, U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, phone (202) 619-5053 or e-mail: cstearns@pd.state.gov.

The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State fosters mutual understanding between the United States and other countries through international educational and training programs. The bureau does so by promoting personal, professional, and institutional ties between private citizens and organizations in the United States and abroad, as well as by presenting U.S. history, society, art and culture in all of its diversity to overseas audiences. Further information is available at http://exchanges.state.gov.

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