Four Loyola students receive the Gilman scholarship to study abroad


Loyola announced over the summer that four students received the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship to study abroad in the 2020-2021 school year.
This comes after a year of being unable to send students abroad due to COVID-19.
The Gilman Scholarship allows students who are financially limited and have been historically underrepresented to enhance their learning experience by spending a semester abroad, giving them the opportunity to gain proficiency in diverse languages and cultures, according to the Gilman Scholarship Association.
Psychological science major Demia Buford is one recipient of the Gilman Scholarship. Buford said she is looking forward to spending the spring semester of junior year meeting people with different experiences than hers while studying abroad in South Korea at Chung-Ang University.
“I want to study abroad in Seoul because I want to learn their opinions on mental health issues among their teens,” Buford said because of her focus in neuroscience. “I also want to go to hear the teens and my peers’ experiences as a child struggling with mental health issues and how that affected their choices in life at a young age.”
Study Abroad Advisor Wyatt Boykin explained that studying abroad gives unique personal, professional, and academic benefits to the individual and every student should get the opportunity to experience this no matter their financial status.
Boykin noted that the scholarship program has had success helping first-generation college students, students with disabilities, and minority students achieve the goal of studying abroad.
“Only around 25% of applicants receive award money in a given cycle,” Boykin said. “We are thrilled and extremely proud to have four recipients this go around.”
Business junior Ajla Ibranovic, another recipient, was originally supposed to spend her semester in Germany, but the program was canceled due COVID-19. She is now using her Gilman Scholarship to study virtually with other students in Madrid, Spain. As a business major, she said this is a great opportunity for her to network and expand her love for fashion.
“It gives me more of a chance to be able to interact with other cultures, languages, and of course people,” Ibranovic said. “Even though I will be virtual, I am still very excited to work with people abroad and in my area of interest.”
Conor Baudier and Anastasia Perez are the two final students who have been awarded the Gilman Scholarship. Baudier is currently studying abroad in Tokyo and Perez in South Korea. Neither student could be reached for comment.