News Archive

Nazareth Student Earns Prestigious Gilman International Scholarship

Published July 25, 2019

Nazareth College student Ayana Seay-Ross is studying abroad in China this fall with the help of a prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship from the U.S. Department of State. 

Seay-Ross plans to study for the 2019- 2020 academic year in Chengdu, China with the Global Maximum Educational Programs. She’s a junior majoring in Chinese and Global Studies with a minor in dance. 

The Gilman Scholarship Program received its highest amount of applications in the program’s history, and reviewed over 3,000 applicants for fall and academic year programs. Just over 800 outstanding students were offered awards to participate in credit-bearing study abroad programs and career-oriented internships in countries all around the world.s

While in China, Seay-Ross plans to finish an internship where she will assist children learning English. She also will work on improving her fluency in Mandarin. She looks forward to discovering the ballet and hip hop dance scene in Chengdu, and traveling around to famous historical sites.

“This is my first time traveling abroad,” said Seay-Ross, “and I hope this year in China will be as tranquil and healing as it will be nourishing to my personal growth and development. I am extremely excited about the new mindset this time studying abroad will grant me.”

Gilman Scholars receive up to $5,000 to apply towards their study abroad or internship program costs with additional funding available for the study of a critical language overseas.  The Gilman Scholarship supports American undergraduate students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad and, since 2001, has enabled more than 25,000 outstanding Americans of diverse backgrounds to engage in a meaningful educational experience abroad. The program has successfully broadened U.S. participation in study abroad, while emphasizing countries and regions where fewer Americans traditionally study.

The late Congressman Gilman, for whom the scholarship is named, served in the House of Representatives for 30 years and chaired the House Foreign Relations Committee. When honored with the Secretary of State’s Distinguished Service Medal in 2002, he commented, “Living and learning in a vastly different environment of another nation not only exposes our students to alternate views, but adds an enriching social and cultural experience.  It also provides our students with the opportunity to return home with a deeper understanding of their place in the world, encouraging them to be a contributor, rather than a spectator in the international community.”

The Gilman Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and is supported in its implementation by the Institute of International Education (IIE)

For More Information

Julie Long | Chief PR Officer | 585-389-2456 or

Nazareth College’s academic strengths cross an unusually broad spectrum of 60 majors, including education, health and human services, management, the fine arts, music, theater, math and science, foreign languages, and the liberal arts. The coeducational, religiously independent, classic campus in a charming suburb of Rochester, N.Y., challenges and supports 2,300 undergrads and 700 graduate students. Nazareth is recognized nationally for its Fulbright global student scholars and commitment to civic engagement. Rigorous programs, an uncommon arts and sciences core, experiential learning, career skills, and a global focus prepare graduates for not just one job, but for their life’s work.

Ayana Seay-Ross is studying abroad in China this fall with the help of a prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship.