The purpose of Global and Experiential Learning at the College is to develop the intercultural competencies of Wheaton students so they may capably serve in international and multicultural contexts different from their own.
Developing intercultural competency is best accomplished through a guided immersion into a cultural context that is different from one’s own. Wheaton currently provides students intercultural and experiential learning opportunities through a variety of academic programs sponsored by the College and through partnerships with organizations like the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU). These experiences have the capacity to enable students to develop skills in relating to others within a particular culture. Such skills help them function effectively across cultural boundaries, preparing them for service in a global economy.
This skill development can also come by exposure to a different culture from interactions with international students on Wheaton’s campus. This is another way Wheaton can bring global perspective to its students. The Billy Graham Scholars Program, which provides scholarships to international students enrolled in Wheaton master’s and doctoral-level programs, has provided these experiences for students in our Graduate School for years. But relatively few international students enroll in Wheaton’s undergraduate program.
Of its $16 million in grant-based financial aid, $200,000 is dedicated to undergraduate international student scholarships. This discrepancy reflects our legacy of a domestic student focus by establishers of endowed scholarships, something we are seeking to change. $200,000 is enough funding to enable only four high-need international students out of our 2,400 undergraduates to attend Wheaton. Additional international students who attend must pay full tuition.
Each year, Wheaton College awards one full-tuition scholarship to an incoming international freshman. For each of the past five years, however, there have been as many as 20 qualified undergraduate international students who have applied to Wheaton College and were unable to be offered admission due to insufficient financing. This is in addition to the many missionary children who apply and are accepted each year, and who are eligible for dozens of scholarships.
Our initial goal is to fund two new endowed scholarships ($900,000 each) to enable Wheaton College to support two international undergraduate students every year in perpetuity.
Our student body ranks among the most gifted, talented, and academically accomplished in the country. God has entrusted us with the privilege and responsibility of teaching, nurturing, and preparing these students to serve society as whole and effective Christians in whatever roles or vocations they undertake.
With more international undergraduate students on Wheaton’s campus, both international and domestic students will better develop the intercultural competencies the global church and economy demand. Your investment in this initiative will be met with profound gratitude and a true sense of stewardship to fulfill the purpose of Global and Experiential Learning for Christ and His Kingdom.
Make a gift, or contact your rep for more information.