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Viral International Education Campaign #YouAreWelcomeHere Expands 2019 National Scholarship Program

MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, 2018 - 4:45 PM All News

Western New England University is pleased to announce that the #YouAreWelcomeHere national scholarship program it helped launch has grown to 57 colleges and universities nationwide that have pledged to create scholarships to help international students study in the United States.

Western New England University and Temple University, leader of the national initiative, launched the effort along with seven other institutions in May 2018 on the heels of a widespread social media campaign. Since then, the #YouAreWelcomeHere scholarship program has received commitments from institutions coast to coast, from Maine to Hawaii, ranging from community colleges to large, public universities.

“Western New England University was among the first to sign on to the #YouAreWelcomeHere effort, and thrilled to welcome dozens of new partners,” says Michelle Kowalsky Goodfellow, director of international admissions. “Students from nearly 30 countries study at Western New England, contributing to the diversity of our campus and enriching the educational environment for all students.”

Beginning in fall 2019, each of the 57 participating colleges and universities will offer two annual, renewable scholarships that will cover at least 50 percent of a recipient’s tuition. These scholarships support incoming international students who are committed to furthering the #YouAreWelcomeHere message through intercultural exchange that bridges divides at their future campuses and beyond.

In addition to the participating colleges and universities, the campaign has earned support from key international education organizations, including NAFSA: Association of International Educators and the Institute of International Education (IIE).

“The #YouAreWelcomeHere Scholarship meets an essential challenge in the effort to support international and refugee students, foster intercultural understanding and develop future leaders,” said Allan E. Goodman, president of the IIE. “Refugee students flee conflict zones and cross intercultural divides to continue their higher education. As a higher education community, it is our responsibility to support such great efforts and welcome refugees to safe-haven universities across the United States.”

To qualify, international applicants must hold citizenship in a country outside the U.S. and not possess U.S. citizenship or permanent residency. Interested students must apply for admission to one of the 57 participating universities or colleges, before completing a #YouAreWelcomeHere scholarship application to be submitted directly to the university or college of choice. The application deadline for the fall 2019 Western New England University scholarship is February 15, 2019, with awardees receiving notification by May 2019. A full list of participating institutions is available at youarewelcomehereusa.org.

About the #YouAreWelcomeHere Campaign

Following expressions of apprehension by some international students about studying in the U.S., in November 2016, Temple University expanded the #YouAreWelcomeHere hashtag into an international campaign to ensure that international students at U.S. universities and colleges feel welcome in the U.S. Since then, more than 350 colleges and universities, 70 international education companies and organizations, and 20 high schools have joined the social media campaign.