IIE Scholarship will Send Undergrad Abroad

June 16, 2015 -- UC Irvine’s Study Abroad Center recently announced six scholarships to UCI undergraduates to help them study overseas. Funded by the Institute for International Education (IIE) and the dean of each student’s school, the Generation Study Abroad STEAM Scholarships are directed toward students in science, technology, engineering, arts and math-related fields to help increase the number and diversity of U.S. college students studying abroad.

Undergraduate Vicki Au is the Samueli School’s recipient. Au will use the $2,500 grant to study at Hong Kong University this fall. In addition to Au, one student each was selected from arts, biology, information and computer sciences, physical sciences and public health.

While she is abroad, Au will write a blog that describes her experiences, and when she returns, she will continue to encourage other students to follow in her footsteps by talking to classes, organizations, and student researcher teams. She plans to use her time abroad to expose herself to different aspects of engineering in an effort to decide which area to focus on. She also hopes to strengthen her Mandarin and Cantonese language skills, and learn more about her Chinese heritage.

“Finance has always been a major concern for me,” Au said. “However, with the STEAM Scholarship, I will be able to take a step closer towards my study abroad dream. I am truly grateful of how the Institute of International Education (IIE) and the UCI Study Abroad Center have made this experience possible for me.”

IIE this year funded 160 study-abroad scholarships for students at 26 colleges. The organization seeks to double the number of students who study overseas each year, and hope to enable more U.S. students, especially those typically underrepresented, to participate.

UCI’s Study Abroad Center has set a goal to increase the percentage of UCI students studying abroad to 20 percent by 2020. Currently, about 14 percent of undergrads go overseas for at least one semester.

-- Anna Lynn Spitzer

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