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Eight CCU students receive scholarship funding from the Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship Program to study abroad

May 24, 2022

Eight Coastal Carolina University students were recently awarded a total of $38,000 through the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program to study abroad in countries such as the Bahamas, Italy, France, Scotland, Cyprus, Greece, and Taiwan.

The U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship is a grant program that enables students to study or intern abroad, thereby gaining skills critical to national security and economic prosperity. Awards range up to $5,000 for study, research, or internship support abroad, with an additional $3,000 available when students add the study of a critical language as a part of their experience. Typically, approximately a quarter to a third of applicants are awarded in this competitive national program. In this cycle, all eight of CCU’s applicants were awarded scholarships. These are in addition to the six students awarded in the Fall 2021 cycle, receiving $27,000 in awards.

“Coastal Carolina University has a mentoring program to support students in telling their stories about their personal and professional aspirations and how the respective education abroad program will help them achieve their goals,” said Darla Domke-Damonte, CCU’s associate provost for global initiatives and coordinator of the mentoring program. “Having 100% of our applicants receive the scholarship this cycle is great news for each of the students and an exceptional milestone for the University.”

The students awarded scholarships this cycle include:

• Holly Mullins, a junior from Baltimore, Md., who is an engineering science major. She is participating in the CCU faculty-led program Field Methods in Oceanography Data Analysis (Oban, Scotland) in Maymester 2022;

• Jason Orcutt, a junior from Conway, S.C., who is a visual communication design major. He is participating in the faculty-led program Coastal in Tuscany (Italy) in Maymester 2022;

• Vanessa Venegas Soriano, a senior from Conway, S.C., who is a political science major. She will participate in the China National Language Program to Taiwan in Fall 2022;

• Jayme Carlson, a senior from Myrtle Beach, S.C., who is an art history major and a student in the CCU Honors program. She is participating in the CCU faculty-led program to Cyprus and Greece during Maymester 2022;

• Miles Tarullo, a senior from Louisville, Ky., who is a marine science major and a student in the CCU Honors program. He is participating in the CCU faculty-led program Biology of Sharks in the Bahamas during Maymester 2022;

• Berkleigh Macheras, a sophomore from Myrtle Beach, S.C., who is a marketing major. She will participate in the semester abroad program at Ecole Superieure du Commerce Exterieur (Paris, France) in Fall 2022;

• Grant (Cage) Mitchell, a senior from Longs, S.C., who is an applied physics major and a student in the CCU Honors program. He is participating in the CCU faculty-led program Field Methods in Oceanography Data Analysis (Oban, Scotland) in Maymester 2022;

• Destanee Timmons, a junior from Pineville, S.C., who is a languages and intercultural studies major. She will participate in the American Institute for Foreign Study program abroad in Cannes, France, in Summer 2022.

“It is an honor to receive such a prestigious award,” said Timmons. “I’m still in disbelief that I am a Gilman scholarship recipient. This award is amazing as it will help pay for a majority of my study abroad fees, allowing me the freedom to experience another culture.”

Orcutt said, “Receiving this scholarship is so beyond exciting, and I thank CCU’s Center for Global Engagement and the Gilman Scholarship for this amazing opportunity.”

To learn more information about CCU’s mentoring program for the Gilman Scholarship, please contact Domke-Damonte at ddamonte@coastal.edu.