Increasing Study Abroad Opportunities

Ohio Wesleyan Recognized Nationally as a Gilman Scholarship Program ‘Greatest Growth Institution’

By Cole Hatcher

DELAWARE, Ohio – Ohio Wesleyan University is being recognized by the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program as one of the nation’s “Greatest Growth Institutions” for providing students with opportunities to study abroad. The honor was announced March 5 at the Diversity Abroad Annual Conference in Boston.

“The Gilman Scholarship Program makes study abroad possible for many of our students,” said Darrell J. Albon, director of the Ohio Wesleyan’s International & Off-Campus Programs Office and administrative director of OWU Connection Programs.

“At Ohio Wesleyan, we strive to educate moral leaders for the global society – students with a strong liberal arts background that helps them to understand critical issues from many academic and cultural perspectives,” said Albon, who was in Boston for the announcement. “The Gilman Scholarship Program is vital to our effort and, we believe, vital for the future of our nation as well.”

During the 2017-2018 academic year, seven Ohio Wesleyan students earned Gilman Scholarships, enabling them to study in countries including Morocco, South Korea, and Spain.

Study aboard is considered a cornerstone of The OWU Connection, Ohio Wesleyan’s signature program to help students think big (understand issues from multiple academic disciplines), go global (gain international perspective), and get real (translate classroom knowledge into real-world experience).

In addition to traditional semester-long study abroad, The OWU Connection includes Theory-to-Practice Grants, Travel-Learning Courses, internships, faculty-mentored research, and more. Learn more at

As part of Ohio Wesleyan being recognized by the Gilman Scholarship Program, the university was asked to share a strategy that helped it to achieve some of the nation’s “greatest growth” in scholarship awards and utilization.

“The role of peer mentors, we have found, is very important,” Albon said. “Having students who have received Gilman Scholarships available to promote the program, encourage their peers to apply, read their applications, and provide feedback matters a great deal. Our student-mentors deserve the strongest and longest applause.”

Since the Gilman Scholarship Program was created in 2001, it has enabled 28,000 students with demonstrable financial need to study abroad in nearly 150 countries.

The program, with the support of the U.S. Congress, is “committed to ensuring that our next generation of leaders – American students of all backgrounds – engage internationally to foster mutual understanding and develop critical skills in support of our national security and economic prosperity, as well as their own futures.” The program is administered by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Learn more at

Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier liberal arts universities. Located in Delaware, Ohio, the private university offers more than 90 undergraduate majors and competes in 25 NCAA Division III varsity sports. Through Ohio Wesleyan’s signature OWU Connection program, students integrate knowledge across disciplines, build a diverse and global perspective, and apply their knowledge in real-world settings. Ohio Wesleyan is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives” and included in the U.S. News & World Report and Princeton Review “best colleges” lists. Learn more at