Tuesday, June 11, 2013

HU Junior Takes the Road Less Traveled and Spends the Semester in Cyprus

HU Junior Takes the Road Less Traveled and Spends the Semester in Cyprus

"'Two roads diverged in the woods and … I took the road less traveled,' and it hurt man!  Really bad!  Rocks, thorns, and glass…not cool Robert Frost. But what if there really were two paths? You want to be on the one that leads to awesome, right?" -Kid President (Robby Novak)
Hampton University’s Toni White is moving in the right direction as the recipient of the Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship. White received a $27,000 scholarship and studied a wide array of classes in Cyprus this spring.
Toni White visits Turkey during her trip.

The New York native and five-year MBA major decided at a young age she would work hard and would not be afraid to travel and make the world a better place. After a troubled childhood, White was determined to excel in school and remain at the top of her class so she would not fall victim to her environment.

The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholar (GLS) program offers grants to undergraduates in the United States of limited financial means to pursue academic studies abroad. Such international study is intended to better prepare students to assume significant goals in an increasingly global economy and interdependent world.

“Through traveling, I have been able to witness what it means to live without clean water, the strength it takes to travel 10 miles on foot to reach your next destination and the true importance of family,” said White. “I have a greater appreciation of my life and have become more motivated to achieve a better life for my family and myself.”

International experience is critically important in the educational system and career development of American students. The Gilman Scholarship Program broadens academic abilities and aims to encourage students to choose non-traditional study abroad destinations, especially those outside of Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand.
Toni White during her visit to Cyrus.

White, unfamiliar with Cyprus embarked on an adventure of a lifetime as GLS allowed her to study the country’s national debt crisis. 

“As a five-year MBA major, interested in world finance and business, it was fascinating and important for me to witness the transformation of Greece during their debt crisis,” said White.

White wants to be an example to her peers and show them that hard work and dedication ultimately pays off. As a first generation college student, she is confident that receiving the Gilman Scholarship will inspire other students to want to study abroad.

“I never succumbed to the belief that my upbringing or family’s income would limit my possibilities,” she said.

White plans to share her collegiate experience in Cyprus with students in the HU Freddye T. Davy Honors College and School of Business. As White continues to do great things, as students and future generational leaders, we must ask ourselves, what will you do to make the world awesome?

Chad Harris '14


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