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Student Support Services Participants Make History

Student Support Services (SSS) participants Chareva McCullough and Keyanna Webb are the first African Americans from UTC to study abroad in South Africa. They are enrolling at the University of KwaZulu-Natal in Durban during the Spring 2006 term. The study abroad program is sponsored by the African Studies Center and the Office of Study Abroad at Michigan State University (MSU) and the Council for Opportunity in Education (TRIO). SSS is a federally funded TRIO program.

Study abroad is a rite of passage for many UTC students. “SSS participants must have access to similar experiences,” said Shirl S. Gholston, Director of Student Support Services. Gholston, Hubert Prevost Jr., Director of Cooperative Education and International Programs and other UTC personnel have made it possible for these students to participate in the study abroad program.

Funding from several sources has allowed study abroad to become an affordable option for these students. Keyanna Webb was awarded a $5,000 scholarship from the U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hayes Group Projects Abroad. This entity annually awards five undergraduate scholarships. Selected students had a Grade Point Average of 3.0 or higher and were participants in a Student Support Services or Ronald E. McNair Post baccalaureate program. Campus resources supported Chareva McCullough. She was awarded $2,000 from SSS and $850 from International Educational Schools. McCullough was also named an alternate for the U.S. Department of Education Fulbright-Hayes Group Projects scholarship.

Gholston believes international experiences are crucial to helping SSS participants understand themselves and the roles they play in the development of their society and the world at large. “In addition, the experience will enrich lives, enhance academic experiences and increase career potential,” Gholston said. “Efforts extended toward providing opportunities for SSS participants to study abroad are keeping with the mission of the UTC project.”

January 27, 2006

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