Defining diversity is not succinct. The vocabulary and the context in which it is used are often contested. The UIC Study Abroad Office is proud to support one of the most diverse student populations that embark on overseas educational opportunities. We are dedicated to supporting students from diverse backgrounds including, but not limited to, categories of race/ethnicity, socio-economic background (e.g. financial need, first generation), physical ability, sexual orientation, and gender identity. The idea and definition of being a minority shifts and is interchangeable with the country in which you may find yourself. Your self-perception may also change based on how your host culture views you.

Click here for a list of Diversity Focused Scholarships

Read about four exceptional Study Abroad alums.

•  Adam Kuranishi , a political science major with a minor in African American Studies, won a Critical Languages Scholarship and studied intensive Arabic in the summer of 2009 in Tangiers, Morocco followed by a semester at the University of Jordan in Amman.

•  LaTrease Davenport , a first generation college student, won two scholarship awards which fully funded her study abroad program in the Fall of 2008 in Namibia and South Africa.

•  Isna Kugshia , a biological sciences major, studied at the University of Cape Town in South Africa and took a range of courses including a graduate seminar on race, culture and identity.

•  Anand Sandesara , a pre-med double major in history and biology studied abroad three times as an undergraduate in The Netherlands, Egypt, and Denmark before graduating in 2009.

Following is an alphabetical list of resources for students, parents, and advisors which can be used as a starting point for information. This is not an exhaustive list but will begin to hopefully place some of these topics into the study abroad environment. If you have any questions or would like to speak with an SAO advisor about diversity issues, please contact either Krystal McPherson

Amnesty International USA rights/
Information regarding country specific GLBT legal issues.

Anti-Americanism Abroad
This article, Opportunity, Not Threat: Dealing With Anti-Americanism Abroad argues that “Although a strengthening anti-Americanism in many parts of the world does require appropriate risk assessment, it should present invaluable teachable moments for education abroad programs.”

Brown University Diversity Handbook
Diversity Issues in Study Abroad (pdf)
“A collection of quotes by Brown University students about their experiences abroad. The quotes were gathered through a survey that directly addressed issues of diversity including ethnicity, heritage, sexual orientation, religion, minority/majority issues, physical appearance, and language.”

Diversity Focused Scholarships
For a partial list of scholarships that specifically encourage applications from minority, lgbt, and other underrepresented students, click here.
Read testimonials about their study abroad experience written by a diverse group of students who studied in the UK, Germany, Mexico, Rome, Argentina, China, Spain, and Italy.

Mobility International USA
Empowering people with disabilities around the world to achieve their human rights through international exchange and international development.

NAFSA: Association of International Educators Rainbow Special Interest Group
NAFSA has compiled a list of resources that focus on the benefits and challenges of GLBT study abroad students. This site contains information bibliographies, websites, and organizations.

Supporting Diversity in Study Abroad
At this site, students, advisors and parents will find information useful in promoting study abroad participation among underrepresented students, addressing some of the issues and challenges ethnicity may play in their study abroad experience.  Among other resources, the site offers a “ten best reasons to study abroad” list for African-Americans, for Asian Americans, for Hispanic Americans, and for Native Americans.

UIC Office of Access and Equity
A university website dedicated to topics and resources about diversity.


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