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### Passport Grant Awarded to Troy University to Enhance Study Abroad Initiatives

Troy University has been chosen as one of the 51 institutions by the Institute of International Education (IIE) to receive a grant. This grant will facilitate up to 25 TROY students in acquiring their initial U.S. passport, paving the way for them to engage in study abroad opportunities.

The American Passport Project, an initiative aimed at reaching diverse student groups and educational institutions catering to demographics traditionally underrepresented in U.S. study abroad programs, has supported 176 higher education institutions across 41 states since its establishment in 2021.

To qualify for participation in the Project, students must be nominated and approved by IIE. Sarah McKenzie, the Study Abroad Director, mentioned that TROY officials will commence the nomination process for eligible students, including first-generation college students, racial/ethnic minorities, students with disabilities, students with demonstrated financial need, and those who have not previously traveled abroad.

“We are honored to receive the IIE Passport Project grant to assist 25 Pell-eligible students in obtaining their U.S. passports and embarking on study abroad experiences,” stated McKenzie. She emphasized how international education fosters essential skills crucial for success in an increasingly interconnected world, fostering lifelong friendships and offering transformative experiences that can shape students’ futures.

Securing the IIE Passport grant is part of ongoing efforts to make study abroad opportunities accessible to a wide range of TROY students. The Chancellor’s Award for Global Competence (CAGC) aims to promote international awareness among Troy University students in the global workforce while providing financial aid to support this objective. The scholarship amount has increased from \(500 to \)1,250, and students can apply for the CAGC each academic year.

“The Chancellor and his team are dedicated to simplifying the process and incentivizing students to participate,” McKenzie explained. “Most of our trips average around \(3,500, so receiving \)1,250 covers a significant portion of the cost. This opportunity is unparalleled once students graduate from TROY. Chancellor Hawkins aims to ensure that every student who desires to study abroad can seize that opportunity.”

For further details on the nomination process for the Passport Project or studying abroad, individuals can reach out to McKenzie at [contact information] or call 334-808-6128.

About IIE

The IIE American Passport Project underscores IIE’s commitment to expanding access to international education opportunities and promoting equity by removing financial barriers, thereby enhancing the diversity and inclusivity of students engaging in overseas studies. The program prioritizes students early in their higher education journey, allowing them ample time to complete the passport application and study abroad planning process with guidance and assistance from the participating institutions. The goal of the IIE American Passport Project is to provide 10,000 U.S. students with passports by the end of the decade.

IIE is a leading organization in devising and implementing international education strategies and programs. Collaborating with governments, policymakers, educators, and employers globally, IIE prepares students and professionals for the global workforce, equipping them to tackle the increasingly intricate challenges in our interconnected world. Through donor support, the organization initiates programs that aid students, scholars, and artists facing threats to their work, promote cross-cultural teaching and learning, and offer opportunities to underserved populations. Established in 1919 as a non-profit entity, IIE operates through a network of 16 offices and affiliates worldwide, partnering with over 1,600 higher education institutions.

The IIENetwork, an IIE global membership association, supports the strategic advancement of international education. Leveraging decades of experience and expertise, IIE shares resources, knowledge, and practices with members striving to strategize and implement international education efforts, such as fostering international partnerships, recruiting international students, and advocating for study abroad and student mobility.