11 UMaine students named Gilman Scholars in 2022–23 academic year

An unprecedented 11 University of Maine students were awarded the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship during the 2022–23 academic year. 

The Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship Program encourages students from all academic backgrounds to participate in study abroad programs, gain professional skills and immerse themselves in a new culture. Since the inception of the program in 2001, more than 41,000 scholarships of up to $5,000 have been awarded to students participating in study abroad programs and internships around the world, according to the program website.

The countries in which UMaine recipients from the past academic year will travel using their scholarship funds include the United Kingdom, Japan, Australia, Spain, Costa Rica and France. Sixteen students from UMaine applied for the program this academic year. 

Trevor Morrison, a Maine Business School student from Hancock, Maine, double majoring in finance and business information systems and security management, is one of the UMaine recipients from the 2022–23 academic year. He plans to study at University of Mannheim in Germany this fall through the exchange program UMaine has for over 10 years with this prestigious institution. 

“As competitive as the Gilman scholarship is, I am deeply honored that the fund chose to give me assistance for my study abroad experience. The funds will enable me to be in a completely new environment, one that I’ve never experienced before, surrounded by a plethora of different people, knowledge and some of the world’s greatest professors,” Morrison says. “The Gilman scholarship will help me to realize my full potential as an individual, student and soon-to-be professional cohort. I couldn’t recommend the Gilman scholarship enough for students looking to study abroad!” 

The scholarship program seeks to foster students’ engagement as global citizens. It’s sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and is administered by the Institute of International Education. The 38,000 alumni from the program have studied or interned in more than 160 countries, according to its website. 

“I am thrilled to see such a large cohort of UMaine students receiving the prestigious Gilman award to study abroad,” says Orlina Boteva, director of the UMaine Office of International Programs. “The scholarship provides critical financial resources to underrepresented students who otherwise cannot study abroad. Studying abroad is a transformational learning experience for any college student, and I am so excited to hear from the students about their academic and cultural experiences abroad. Upon the completion of their program abroad, Gilman recipients complete a project as a way to give back to their local community and share what they have learned abroad.”

The late Congressman Benjamin A. Gilman, for whom the scholarship is named, served in the House of Representatives for 30 years and chaired the House Foreign Relations Committee. The program was created with his support through the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000. 

With the Gilman scholarship, Brooke Toole, civil and environmental engineering major from Naples, Maine, will be able to study abroad at the Polytechnic University of Valencia in Spain through the University Studies Abroad Consortium.

“I am delighted to be honored as a Gilman Scholar!” Toole says. “The connections I will be able to make through this honor are irreplaceable. The Gilman Scholarship is making it possible for me to fulfill my goals of studying abroad and I am forever grateful for this opportunity! I am so excited to share my experience with others and encourage more stem students to go abroad!” 

Students interested in learning more about the Gilman scholarship and in applying to major external scholarships and fellowships can reach out to the Office of Major Scholarships’ Director Nives Dal Bo-Wheeler at nives.dalbowheeler@maine.edu

To explore study abroad opportunities offered through UMaine, visit the Education Abroad website and contact the Office of International Programs at studyabroad@maine.edu.

Contact: Marcus Wolf, 207.581.3721; marcus.wolf@maine.edu