For Immediate Release: Umoja International Student Fellowship Program: A Gateway to Global Learning and Leadership
Umoja International Student Fellowship Program: A Gateway to Global Learning and Leadership
[Sacramento, CA, January 24, 2024] – The Umoja Community Education Foundation (UCEF) is thrilled to unveil the launch of the Umoja International Student Fellowship Program, an initiative designed to empower and support current UCEF students enrolled in one of our partner colleges and universities with a transformative international studying experience. This innovative program not only expands educational horizons but also forges enduring connections and student support systems between UCEF and our esteemed college and university partners.
About the Program: A small percentage of students who engage in study abroad experiences are students of color, with less than 10% falling into this category. Notably, despite comprising 15.7% of all college enrollments, Black students represent only 4.1% of Americans participating in study abroad programs (US Census Bureau, 2022). This stark discrepancy underscores the underrepresentation of Black students compared to their peers in such programs. Despite these challenges, it is crucial to recognize the multitude of benefits that Black and other students can gain from studying abroad, including enhanced academic achievement, language proficiency, intercultural competence, identity development, overall well-being, and improved career outcomes. Furthermore, data indicates that Black and other students who engage in international study experiences demonstrate heightened retention and graduation rates (Rubin et al., 2014).
The Umoja International Student Fellowship Program addresses this disparity by providing current Umoja students with a distinctive opportunity to expand their horizons, earn transferable credits, and acquire valuable international experience. The program's objectives extend beyond knowledge and skill enhancement, aiming to establish enduring connections between Umoja and our college and university partners. Through a combination of financial support, academic guidance, cultural immersion, professional development, and community engagement, the program equips students for transfer readiness, community leadership, and fosters both personal, professional, and academic growth.
The primary goal of the Umoja International Student Fellowship Program is to enhance students' knowledge, skills, and global perspective, while decreasing time to degree completion and increasing graduation, retention, and transfer rates. Through strengthening connections with college and university partners, the program seeks to create a network of future leaders committed to fostering cultural understanding, community development, and academic excellence.
"Study abroad experiences are transformational for students. Studying abroad opens a world of opportunities for students and decreases time to degree, thereby increasing the likelihood of graduation, retention, and transfer," shares UCEF CEO, Dr. Eric Mayes. The Umoja Student Fellowship Program is going to change lives, and we are delighted to collaborate with the Stupski Foundation and our college and university partners to make this happen."
Key Program Components:
- Financial Support: The fellowship program provides financial assistance to Umoja students who will enroll in a study abroad program hosted and facilitated by one of the college or university partners, ensuring that financial barriers do not hinder their ability to engage in this life-changing credit-earning experience.
- Cultural Immersion: The program promotes cultural exchange, fostering a deep understanding and appreciation for diverse perspectives. Student Fellows will engage in immersive experiences that go beyond traditional classroom settings.
- Professional Development: Student Fellows will have access to unique professional development opportunities, preparing them for future career success and leadership roles within their communities.
- Community Engagement: The program instills a sense of social responsibility by encouraging fellows to actively engage with the local communities in their host countries, promoting a spirit of global citizenship and community leadership.
Impact and Objectives: The primary goal of the Umoja International Student Fellowship Program is to enhance student's knowledge, skills, and global perspective while decreasing time to degree and increasing graduation, retention, and transfer rates. Through strengthening connections with college and university partners, the program seeks to create a network of future leaders committed to fostering cultural understanding, community development, and academic excellence.
How to Apply: Umoja students interested in participating in the International Student Fellowship Program are encouraged to apply by going to https://umojacommunity.org/content/2024-umoja-international-student-fell...
About Umoja Community Education Foundation: Umoja Community Education Foundation is dedicated to fostering a supportive and inclusive community for students, empowering them to achieve educational success and personal growth. The Umoja International Student Fellowship Program is a testament to Umoja's commitment to providing and supporting enriching educational experiences for our students that transcend geographical boundaries.
For media inquiries, please contact Dr. J. West, Grants Program Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org.
About Umoja Community Education Foundation:
Umoja, (a Kiswahili word meaning unity) is a community and critical resource dedicated to enhancing the cultural and educational experiences of African American and other students. We believe that when the voices and histories of students are deliberately and intentionally recognized, the opportunity for self-efficacy emerges and a foundation is formed for academic success. Umoja actively serves and promotes student success for all students through a curriculum and pedagogy responsive to the legacy of the African and African American Diasporas.
Connect with Umoja: Website: www.umojacommunity.org Facebook: Umoja Community Twitter: @UmojaCommunity