Three FVSU Students Awarded Prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship

Posted on Apr 18, 2024

Three FVSU students, Katelyn Davis, Ke'Irra Johnson, and Raven McRae, have been awarded the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship to study abroad this summer. This achievement not only makes history as the largest number of awardees in FVSU history but also stands as a testament to their academic excellence and global ambitions.

On Monday, the FVSU Office of Global Studies and Engagement (OGSE) celebrated the trio during the Annual Cultural Celebration.
Katelyn Davis, a senior Animal Science major, will be interning at a Wildlife Sanctuary in Costa Rica for a month. Biology major Ke'Irra Johnson and Computer Science sophomore Raven McRae will attend a three-week faculty-led program in Zambia. While Johnson will be deepening her understanding of global health through international research collaboration in a multicultural environment, McRae will combine her technical skills with cultural exchange and community development through service learning at the University of Zambia. 

OGSE is awaiting the announcement of more Gilman Scholarship recipients and hopes more funding will be awarded to FVSU students participating in the upcoming study abroad program alongside Johnson and McRae. 

The Gilman Scholarship, a national program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, is a beacon of hope for undergraduate students interested in studying abroad. It not only provides financial support but also enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, equipping them with skills that are critical to national security and economic prosperity.

"I am excited to witness an animal clinic and sanctuary in action, and I am thrilled to have the chance to pursue an internship that aligns with my major and aspirations. I am also looking forward to exploring the biodiversity of Costa Rica and immersing myself in its culture," said Davis, the newly elected SGA Chief Justice.

The Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship program is a beacon of financial support for students at Minority Serving Institutions and Historically Black Colleges and Universities. It awards up to $5,000 per student, a significant amount that can fully cover the cost of a student’s study abroad program. This funding can be used for various expenses, including program tuition, room, board, books, local transportation, insurance, international airfare, passport, and visa fees. Additionally, Gilman scholars are eligible for 12 months of noncompetitive eligibility hiring status within the federal government, opening further opportunities. This scholarship is not just financial aid but a gateway to a world of possibilities.

The Office of Global Studies and Engagement wants students to know that Gilman funding is attainable for all Pell Grant recipients at FVSU and expects them to receive it regularly if they work with the office. 

If students are interested in learning more about the Gilman Scholarship and international education opportunities at Fort Valley State University, they can contact the Director of the Office of Global Studies and Engagement at or Program Specialist Ms. Lara at, or by phone at (478)822-1008.


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