IIE Awards 60 Grants to Students from Caribbean Nations

WASHINGTON, D.C., November 15, 2017  The Institute of International Education (IIE) has selected 60 students from Caribbean nations to receive one-time grants through the IIE’s Emergency Student Fund (ESF). IIE will provide emergency grants of $3,000-$6,000 to students currently attending a two- or four-year college or university in the United States who now lack the funding to continue their education due to the hurricanes that devastated the region in August and September.

Natural disasters claim lives, destroy property and can also disrupt academic progress. The grants are intended to assist students who are at risk of being unable to complete their degrees because they are no longer able to access funds from home. They can be used to cover tuition, room and board and other expenses necessary for their studies.

“The hurricanes created great environmental destruction leading to the interruption of many people’s livelihoods in their home country,” said Katherine Miller, IIE Global Education in Emergencies Specialist. “As such, many students now lack the funding to continue their studies, and it’s a priority and part of IIE’s mission and tradition that we help these students complete their academic degrees.” U.S. institutions are contributing additional financial support to grant recipients on a case-by-case basis and contingent on available funding. Some are contributing matching funding, others additional work study opportunities and others free meal plans.

Grant recipients hail from Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, the British Virgin Islands and Dominica, among other nations. To be eligible for IIE-ESF grant funding, students were nominated by administrators and faculty at their U.S. institutions. School officials could nominate up to five students. According to Open Doors data, nearly 1,500 students from Caribbean nations attended a U.S. institution in 2016-2017. Of those, approximately two-thirds come from the Dominican Republic. Students receiving an IIE-ESF grant attend 30 institutions across the United States including schools such as Howard University; City University of New York, Queensborough Community College; University of Texas at San Antonio; Monroe College; and the University of California, Berkeley.

Since 2010, IIE has awarded more than 800 emergency grants through ESF to students across the world, amounting to more than $2 million in financial aid. Grants have gone to students in Haiti, Iran, Japan, Libya, Nepal, the Philippines, Syria, Thailand, Yemen after these countries were impacted by conflict or devastating hurricanes, typhoons or floods. The Institute is raising support for a dedicated fund so that IIE can respond quickly to help students when disasters and emergencies arise. Previous ESF initiatives have been funded with support from individual donors and organizations who share this goal.

Assisting students and scholars in need has been a part of IIE’s mission since its founding in 1919. Through the IIE-ESF grants, IIE seeks to respond to environmental and man-made disasters that threaten to hinder students’ ability to complete their degrees. IIE also supports scholars in danger through funds such as the Scholar Rescue Fund (SRF). Learn more here about institutions in Jordan that are supporting SRF scholars. 

About the Institute of International Education

Founded in 1919, the Institute of International Education (IIE) is a private not-for-profit leader in the international exchange of people and ideas. In collaboration with governments, foundations and other sponsors and donors, IIE creates programs of study and training for students, educators and professionals from all sectors. These programs include the flagship Fulbright Program and Gilman Scholarships administered for the U.S. Department of State. IIE conducts policy research and provides a range of information resources on international exchange. The Institute’s Emergency Student Fund and Scholar Rescue Fund provide support to students and scholars in danger.


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