Junior awarded Gilman scholarship to study at McDaniel’s Budapest campus

December 13, 2010

McDaniel College junior Rhaelynn Givens of Mt. Vernon, Wash., has been awarded a Gilman International Scholarship to study in the spring at the College’s campus in Budapest, Hungary.

“Other than the Honors Program that I was accepted into, I chose McDaniel because of the unique experience of going to one’s college in a foreign country,” Givens wrote in her Gilman application essay. “This college and this program are giving me an opportunity to make something which formerly seemed an impossible ‘later’ goal, a possible, present experience.”

Givens, who is majoring in English with a minor in Latin, plans to write a series of short essays about her international experience and the people she meets abroad – their encounters and interactions. She also is excited about the prospect of sending McDaniel’s student newspaper, The Free Press, a story each month, hoping to encourage other students to take the leap and go abroad for a semester.

Givens is the second McDaniel student to receive a Gilman scholarship. The first is Izabella Baer-Benchoff, a senior who studied this fall at the University of Jordan in Amman.

The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program, which awards up to $5,000 to students for international study, was created 10 years ago and is funded through the International Academic Opportunity Act of 2000 and sponsored by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State. In the past decade, the Gilman Program has awarded over 8,800 scholarships to an outstanding and diverse group of students representing 894 institutions from all fifty states (along with Washington D.C. and Puerto Rico), who have studied in 116 countries, according to the program’s Web site.