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U.S. Department of State adds sign language to Gilman Scholarship’s Critical Need Language Award

June 25, 2021

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The Education Abroad and International Fellowships (EA) unit within Gallaudet University’s Office of International Affairs is thrilled to share important news with deaf and hard of hearing U.S. students needing financial assistance to study or intern abroad. The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program now allows sign languages as part of its Critical Need Language Award.

“I gave been lobbying for this for years, and now students can apply for extra funds to study sign languages in countries where the spoken language is a ‘critical’ language,’ said EA Manager Becca AbuRakia-Einhorn. “This opens increased funding for Gallaudet students.”

Gilman is the primary U.S. scholarship for undergraduate study abroad. According to its website, it allows U.S. students “…to gain proficiency in diverse languages and cultures, skills that are critically important to their academic and career development.” The advantage of the Critical Language Award, said AbuRakia-Einhorn, is that students who are awarded Gilman scholarships can receive up to $3,000 in additional scholarship money — for a combined total of $8,000 — to study one of the languages that the Department of State designates as “critical.”

Students who are currently receiving a Pell Grant as part of their financial aid package are eligible to apply for a Gilman scholarship. For more information, watch this video.

25 June 2021

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