HPU Student Awarded Gilman Scholarship to Study Abroad

December 10, 2015

Samantha Patanapaiboon

Samantha Patanapaiboon

Honolulu, Hawaii — Hawai‘i Pacific University student Samantha Patanapaiboon was recently awarded the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, to support her study abroad experience. Patanapaiboon was selected for the scholarship, sponsored by the U.S. State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Patanapaiboon is a Biology and Human & Health Sciences major. She grew up in Ewa Beach, Hawaii, and graduated from Campbell High School. She will study at Mahidol University in Thailand, for the spring 2016 academic term.

"I am very excited and hopeful for what this journey has in store for me," Patanapaiboon said. “To have the chance to study abroad is an incredible opportunity and a life changing experience."

“I am very thankful to have received such a scholarship, because without it my opportunity to study abroad would not be possible,” she added.

Gilman scholars receive up to $5,000 to apply toward their study abroad or internship program costs, and Patanapaiboon was awarded the full amount. She is among 800 American undergraduates who were recently selected from 355 colleges and universities across the U.S.

“Samantha is the sixth HPU student who has received the Gilman scholarship in the past two years,” said Melissa Matsubara, director of Study Abroad and International Exchange Programs at HPU. “Making study abroad opportunities accessible to all students and not just those that can afford to travel overseas is extremely important to our office."

Matsubara, who has sat on the Gilman and National Security Education Program Boren Scholarship review committees, says she is "more than happy to work closely with all students on study abroad scholarship applications.”

For information about HPU’s study abroad programs, visit or email

The Gilman program aims to diversify the students who study and intern abroad and the countries and regions where they go. Recipients have the opportunity to gain a better understanding of other cultures, countries, languages, and economies, making them better prepared to assume leadership roles within government and the private sector. For more information on the program, which is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE), go to