Four WMU students receive Gilman Scholarship

Gilman Scholarship logoKALAMAZOO, Mich.—A highly competitive Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship has been awarded to four Western Michigan University students to study abroad during the summer 2019 semester.

Ten WMU students applied for the summer 2019 application round and four were selected. At a selection success rate of 40 percent, Gilman awards to WMU students are well above the national average acceptance rate of 29 percent. Two WMU students were also selected as alternates.

Nicholas Lenning, Kathryn Elms, Deidre Shepherd and Jenna Mattison were selected for the summer 2019 scholarships.

Gilman Scholarship

The Gilman Program offers scholarships for U.S. citizen undergraduate students to pursue academic studies or credit-bearing, career-oriented internships abroad. The U.S. Department of State awards the Gilman Scholarship as part of a larger government effort to expand the number of Americans studying and interning abroad, helping them gain skills critical to national security and prosperity.

SUmmer 2019 recipients

  • Nicholas Lenning is majoring in aviation flight science with a minor in Japanese. He will spend the Summer II semester studying in Japan at the Japan Center for Michigan Universities.
  • Kathryn Elms is majoring in organizational communication with minors in global and international studies and Spanish. She is spending the Summer I semester studying Spanish in Quito, Ecuador.
  • Deidre Shepherd is majoring in healthcare services and sciences with a minor in holistic health care. She is spending the Summer I semester studying cultural connections in Dakar, Senegal.
  • Jenna Mattison is majoring in Hispanic studies with a minor is Spanish. She will be spending the Summer II semester studying in Spain at the Universidad de Cantabria.

Gilman at WMU

Applying for a Gilman Scholarship is a competitive process that requires some advising. Dr. Lee M. Penyak, WMU director of Study Abroad, serves as the University's advisor for the Gilman International Scholarship Program and many other federal study abroad scholarship programs.

Those interested in applying for the scholarship should contact Penyak at For more information, visit WMU's Gilman Scholarship website. To learn about the University's study abroad programs and services, visit the Study Abroad website or call (269) 387-5890.