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Gilman recipient shares experience, expertise

September 6, 2012

Study abroad student Sabiha Dubose reflects on her experience in France.

I studied business and the French language at SKEMA Euro-American Institute in Antibes, France this spring 2012. Studying abroad was the most life changing experience I’ve had thus far in my life. Being around native French people on a daily basis was a learning experience in itself. I loved being able to walk down the street and have someone stop me and ask for directions in French. Being able to correctly answer them was even better, because I knew my language skills were improving, and it made me feel like a local to be able to give French visitors directions.

Ease in travel was also an advantage of studying abroad. I was fortunate enough to travel to several regions within France in addition to Istanbul, Turkey; Amsterdam, Netherlands; San Remo, Italy; Dolceaqua, Italy; and Monaco. Because I lived only a 20 minute train ride from the Nice International Airport, travel by plane was easy and usually rather inexpensive. The trains and buses were also amazing means of transportation and stopped throughout the city frequently.

My study abroad experience probably wouldn’t have been the same if it weren’t for receiving the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship. It is a generous scholarship program that aids undergraduate students with limited financial means to pursue international education. The application required me to write a personal essay stating why the country I’m studying in will be beneficial to my undergraduate degree as well as my professional goals. It also required me to write a follow-on proposal that states how I will continue to promote international education and the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship program. Upon completion of the study abroad program, students who received the Gilman Scholarship must write a report within six months about how they completed their follow-on proposal. For me, I was given the amazing opportunity to be a Study Abroad Peer Advisor in which I will complete my follow-on proposal and more. Without this scholarship I wouldn’t have been able to expand my experience abroad and visit other countries besides France. In writing my follow-on project report, I will be sure to express my gratitude for their generosity in making my dreams come true. I highly encourage students who meet the requirements to check out the Gilman International Scholarship and apply!

This study abroad experience was more than learning in class. Learning took place everywhere I went and that was the most exciting aspect for me. I learned to adapt to new situations, be more independent, and also be open to new ideas and cultures. Living in France for a semester strengthened my desire to work there in my future. I plan to go through an accounting master’s program and hopefully obtain a position in France through an international accounting firm. Although this may take many years to accomplish, I know I will be living once again in France!

Sabiha Dubose

About Sabiha Dubose

Sabiha Dubose is a junior in business accounting with a French minor, who studied abroad spring 2012 in Antibes, France. Dubose was a recipient of the US State Department funded Gilman International Scholarship.

Gilman Workshops

CSU Study Abroad is offering two Gilman Workshops Sept. 12 and 13 from 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. in the Lory Student Center East Atrium. The workshops will assist students planning to apply for the Gilman International Scholarship, a scholarship sponsored by the U.S. State Deparment.

The mission of the scholarship is to diversify U.S. students studying abroad and diversify the countries where students study. Facilitators of the workshop will read and provide suggestions on prepared essays, help brainstorm ideas for scholarship essays, and explain the scholarship requirements and characteristics of strong applicants.

Facilitators will include not only members of the CSU Study Abroad team, but also Andrea Reeve, director of the Academic Advancement Center; Elizabeth Terry, interim director for Advising, Recruitment and Retention in the College of Liberal Arts; Eileen Griego and Ryan Flynn from Student Financial Services; and Sabiha Dubose, a study abroad peer advisor and past Gilman recipient.

More information

For more information about CSU Study Abroad and study abroad scholarship opportunities, attend the Study Abroad Scholarship panel Sept. 6, visit the Study Abroad Fair Sept. 7 or visit CSU Study Abroad in Laurel Hall. CSU Study Abroad walk-in hours are Mondays through Thursdays from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Students can also learn more online.

Contact: Julia Helminiak
Phone: (970) 491-6342