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Congratulations to Drexel's 2019 Cycle 1 Gilman Scholarship Recipients!

December 16, 2019

We are pleased to announce that four Drexel students have received Gilman Scholarships to support study or co-op abroad in the spring and summer of 2020. The prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, supports American undergraduate students pursuing study abroad and international internships. Congratulations to all of Drexel's honorees!

Abbey Keller (BS Health Sciences '22, Honors)
Gilman Scholar to South Korea for summer study abroad
Abbey Keller is a second year student at Drexel University pursuing a degree in health science with a minor in nutrition. Coming from a rural town in Vermont, moving to Philadelphia was a challenging yet enriching endeavor. To expand her horizons, Abbey will grow her understanding about food and nutrition in yet another cultural context. With the generous help of the Gilman International Scholarship, Abbey will be studying at Hanyang University in Seoul, South Korea for the International Summer School Program in July of 2020.

Gabrielle Brizzi photoAfrah Howlader (BS Public Health '21, Honors)
Gilman Scholar to Singapore for spring/summer co-op
Afrah is a junior public health major planning to pursue epidemiology in graduate school. She decided to study at the Dornsife School of Public Health because of its emphasis on social justice and urban health. Ultimately, Afrah would like to work in a governmental capacity and use evidence-based research to improve disparate health outcomes and empower marginalized communities. She was a 2018 Dornsife Global Development Scholar to eSwatini and is currently a Drexel Community Scholar, serving at Moder Patshala, an educational nonprofit organization. Afrah is also a member of Phi Sigma Pi National Honor Fraternity and the president of the Dornsife Undergraduate Student Government Organization.

Gabrielle Brizzi photoGabrielle Brizzi (BS Public Health '21, Honors)
Gilman Scholar to Cambodia for spring/summer co-op
Gabrielle is a third year public health major on the pre-med track with an unwavering passion for global health. As a Gilman Scholar in Cambodia, Gabrielle is eager to learn more about clinical care, public health interventions, and the way they are implemented in low-resource settings. As a future physician in the field of global health, Gabrielle is excited to learn from individuals who come from different cultural, ethnic, and educational backgrounds while in Cambodia. On campus, Gabrielle is a Resident Assistant where she mentors first-year students and she plans to use her experience in Cambodia as a way to educate and encourage residents to go abroad and experience all that the world has to offer.

Shantal Perez Vasquez photoShantal Perez Vasquez (BS Management Information Systems and Marketing '21)
Gilman Scholar to Japan and Thailand for spring/summer co-op
Shantal is currently pursuing her Bachelor of Science in Management Information Systems and Marketing. Shantal was born in the Dominican Republic and raised in Philadelphia. She is also a first-generation college student. Her experiences and her journey have motivated her to see the beauty that the world has to offer. She is also eager to immerse in different cultures and learn about their uniqueness. Shantal is a member of LeBow BRIDGE, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated. and also a mentor for the Big Brothers and Big Sisters of America. Through these organizations, she has learned valuable lessons about giving back to the community, mentorship, and empowerment. She plans to use the lessons she learns abroad as a way to educate and encourage her community.

The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program provides U.S. undergraduate students with financial support to pursue academic studies or credit-bearing internships abroad. The program supports many students who have been historically underrepresented in education abroad, including but not limited to first-generation college students, students in STEM fields, ethnic minority students, students with disabilities, and students coming from U.S. states with less study abroad participation.

Learn more about the Gilman Scholarship and how to apply at Drexel.

Gilman Scholars receive up to $5,000 to apply towards their study abroad or internship program costs with additional funding available for the study of a critical language overseas. The Gilman Scholarship supports American undergraduate students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad. Since 2001, it has enabled more than 28,000 outstanding Americans of diverse backgrounds to engage in meaningful educational experiences in 145 countries around the globe.

“The Gilman Program aims to make study abroad, and its career advantages, more accessible and inclusive for American students.  These diverse American students gain critical skills overseas that expand their career options and ability to make an impact in their home communities,” said Heidi Manley, the Chief of USA Study Abroad at the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. She notes that the program particularly focuses on supporting first-generation college students, students in the STEM fields, ethnic and racial minority students, students with disabilities, students who are veterans, students attending community colleges and minority serving institutions, and other populations underrepresented in study abroad, as well as broadening the destinations where scholars study or intern.

The Gilman Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and is supported in its implementation by the Institute of International Education (IIE).


The U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ (ECA) mission is to build relations between the people of the United States and the people of other countries through academic, cultural, sports, professional and private exchanges, as well as public-private partnerships and mentoring programs. These exchange programs improve foreign relations and strengthen the national security of the United States. ECA programs, funding, and other activities encourage the involvement of American and international participants from traditionally underrepresented groups, including women, racial and ethnic minorities, and people with disabilities.  Artists, educators, athletes, students, youth and rising leaders in the United States and more than 160 countries around the globe participate in academic, cultural, sports, and professional exchanges.  For more information about ECA programs, initiatives, and achievements, visit

The Institute of International Education works with policymakers, educators and employers across the globe to prepare students and professionals for the global workforce and equip them to solve the increasingly complex challenges facing our interconnected world. An independent, not-for-profit organization founded in 1919, IIE has a network of 18 offices and affiliates worldwide, and over 1,300 member institutions.