South American Gateway to the Caribbean
Located on the northern end on South America Venezuela is often considered the gateway to the Caribbean. In fact exotic Trinidad and Tobago lie off her coast. The region is distinctively tropical and diverse and for this reason attracts many students interested in ecotourism, biodiversity, biology and other environmental disciplines.
The federal government funds two very remarkable and rich scholarships for students who wish to study in Venezuela:
- The David L. Boren Scholarships are offered to both undergrads and grad students whose career interests may include national security. Students planning on a comprehensive program in Venezuela may qualify only if their academics are outstanding and the other list of criteria are covered. The program was established beyond wholly altruistic, to fill in the gaps in national security where there is a high demand for niche-trained personnel with intimate knowledge of critical areas in the world, such as Venezuela. Eligible applicants must be able to experience Venezuelan culture and language up close and personal. They must be willing to at least repay the scholarships with service in the Department of Defense or Homeland Security following graduation and preference is given to those who long-term career plans may track them in that direction. Scholarships may be as much as $25,000.
- Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarships give disadvantaged students the opportunity to study abroad. The feds hope the nation will benefit from a more diverse and balanced global leadership in the coming generations. To those ends the generous Gilman awards are bestowed. Applicants must be Pell Grant recipients. Preference is given to minorities and those attending institutions that are not traditional liberal arts colleges. Up to $5,000 is given to over 700 students across the country.
Students in the Latin American and Iberian Studies program planning to study in Venezuela through the University of Richmond may qualify for the Don Quixote Scholarships. The awards go to students whose academics put them above their peers. Scholarships are a little over $1,000. Advanced knowledge of Spanish is required.
The James Scobie Memorial Scholarships are designed specifically to allow a doctoral student up to $1,000 in travel expenses to go to Venezuela and do “preliminary research” toward his or her dissertation. The program emphasizes “preliminary” and is for short-term travel only as opposed to long-term studies. The program is sponsored by the Conference on Latin American History.
The Rain Forest Alliance is a leading international organization whose mission is the salvage of the Rain Forest in such critical countries as Venezuela. The Kleinhans Fellowships are sponsored by the organization and provide valuable funding for graduate and post-graduate students in the field of forestry and timber management. Up to $15,000 in fellowship awards.
Study Abroad Organizations
AmeriSpan is a provider of Spanish language programs that fit students with families in countries like Venezuela. The experience is intended to provide the ultimate classroom: the one in which a student learns best by doing and becoming immersed in their studies. Like other similar organizations, AmeriSpan provides generous scholarships:
- Open Door Scholarships are given on a financial need basis. Preference is given to students without other forms of travel scholarships and is available for programs lasting longer than 8 weeks. Up to $500 possible.
- Match Scholarships offer up to $500 on top of a Gilman or Boren Scholarship. Applicants must obviously be participating in an AmeriSpan program to qualify.
SEA Semester provides sea-based voyages for students whose educational focus is marine biology and other related maritime studies. If you’re interested in getting in on international studies that are related to the ocean areas around and near Venezuela you might consider this an appropriate and exciting option. SEA also realizes that many students are strapped financially when it comes to regular tuition not to mention international travel. For this reason the organization extends valuable tuition cuts and scholarships based on both academic scores and financial need:
- Dean’s Awards offer outstanding students a generous $5,000.
- Presidential Awards offer even more: up to $7,000 to the most academically outstanding student in each voyage.
Scholarships for Venezuelan Students
The Milwaukee Foundation Victor Vega Scholarships are awarded to South American students who wish to study at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Each year the program funds the studies of a handful of international students including those from Venezuela.