Diversity Excellence Scholars Abroad (DESA)

Diversity Excellence Scholars Abroad 

 DESA is also supported by:

GEO Study Abroad

The purpose of the Diversity Excellence Scholars Abroad (DESA) Program is to increase the diversity of UO participants in study abroad programs by providing funding tounderrepresented students, who in turn serve as ambassadors upon their return to campus by:

  • Increasing awareness of study abroad opportunities among {generally} historically underrepresented students on campus

  • Helping disseminate the message that studying abroad is an experience that all students can and should consider

Each recipient will receive one scholarship in the amount of $ 2,000

DEADLINE: February 28, 2021

DESA in Around the O: Diverse Students Study Around the World Under Grant Program

2018-2019 Awardees

Angel Lopez Sanchez

Angel Lopez Sanchez

Major: Bachelors of Architecture & minor in Landscape Architecture
Year: Junior
Hometown: Woodburn, Oregon
Professional Goal: emphasis in residential construction
Program: Architecture and Art History 
Country: Rome, Italy (Summer 2019)

"My journey as a first generation college student has driven an ambitious in me to further expand my education and way of learning. The historical architecture in Rome is one of the most prominent forms in the world along with its ingenuity. The program is an opportunity for me to view the historical temples and basilicas to discover a new view to architecture."

Gina Tran

Gina Tran

Major: Advertising
Year: Junior
Hometown: Beaverton, Oregon
Professional Goal: land a job in the creative sector within advertising
Program: GlobalWorks International Internship 
Country: Seoul, South Korea (Summer 2019)

"The international internship program will help me gain the professional experience I need for my future career. Traveling outside the comfort zone of home will broaden my cultural understanding beyond my Vietnamese American identity."

Naa Crystal-Candice Quaye

Major: Political Science and International Studies (Minors in French and Ethnic Studies)
Year: Sophomore
Hometown: Ghana
Professional Goal: Immigration Attorney 
Program: International Education, Experience and Employment (IE3)
Country: France (Summer 2019)

"I believe my time abroad will expose me to new perspective and people from other parts of the world. Since I will be taking classes with other students from France, I will be able to learn strategies French students use in their classes which I can incorporate in my studies at UO. Also as a black immigrant woman, studying abroad will be a confident and I believe I would be able to influence as well as set an example for other minorities at UO."

Noe Jines Garcia

Major: International Studies and Ethnic Studies (Minor in Spanish)
Year: Junior
Hometown: Woodburn, Oregon
Professional Goal: Humanitarian Relief Worker in Latin America 
Program: Service Learning: Immigration, Nationalism and Border Politics
Country: Spain and Morocco (Spring 2020)

"My time abroad will impact my UO experience immensely because instead of reading about this [immigration] in articles or textbooks I will be doing it in real life which will be a dream come true and will stick with me beyond my time at UO because it is what I want to do as a future career."



Scholarship recipients will be selected by a committee with representation from Study Abroad Programs, and the Center for Multicultural Academic Excellence.  Applicants will be selected based on the following criteria:

  • Must be a current undergraduate holder of a Diversity Excellence Scholarship or participant in other CMAE programs and/or classes; OR  participant in volunteer, service or other work related to furthering   diversity on campus and/or your community. Students must be planning to graduate no less than two quarters after completion of the study abroad experience, in order to complete the service requirement;
  • Must participate in a UO-sponsored program;
  • Must be enrolled as a full-time degree seeking undergraduate student;
  • Communication skills (verbal and written): successful applicants must demonstrate the ability to communicate effectively and engagingly with peers regarding the importance of study abroad;
  • Participation in campus and/or community activities: successful applicants must demonstrate involvement in campus and community activities.

Service Requirement

All recipients will be required to participate in the following activities and produce the following materials as a condition of the scholarship; recipients must also agree to be included in the DESA directory and may be contacted for future informational and promotional events with prospective study abroad participants.

All DESA awardees must fulfill the following service requirements:

  • One “creative idea” ; as part of the application process, you will design an activity you will lead/participate in or a material you will produce, either while abroad or upon return, to help fulfill the purposes of the scholarship as outlined above.  
  • Produce one piece for use by CMAE and Study Abroad while abroad.  While the themes, focus and design of this piece can and should be tailored to your interests and experience, it must in some way incorporate the theme of study abroad from the perspective of a student from an under-represented background.  The piece must be in one of the following formats:
    • A blog kept during the program; minimum one entry per week of your program.
    • A photo journalistic essay of your experience; minimum 5 photos per week 10 photos per week of your program and a caption.
    • An article suitable for newspaper/magazine publication; minimum 1 page/250 words per week of your program.
  • Within one academic year of your return to campus, participate in the following events in coordination with CMAE and Study Abroad staff:
    • Outreach at the UO Study Abroad Fair
    • An information session for under-represented students interested in study abroad
    • An interview about your experience, which will be videotaped for future use

2017-2018 Awardees

Danielle Bonilla
 San Jose, CA        
Sophomore Major: International Study; Minor: Ethnic Studies / Spanish
Program: Summer; Argentina; NonProfits and Social Change; Internship

Margaret Faliano
 Central Point, Oregon        
Junior Major: Business Administration and International Studies Minor: Spanish and Psychology
Professional Goals: International business and marketing officer        
Program: Summer 2018; Segovia, Spain; GEO Spanish Language and Culture in Segovia

Claudia Monroy
Junior Major: Architecture 
Professional Goals: Architect specializing in affordable and sustainable design        
Program: Summer, Rome, Italy, Architecture and Art History in Rome Program

Kim Varo​​
Junior Major: Spanish 
Professional Goals: Secondary Education
Program: Fall term, Mexico City, Mexico; UNAM Exchange        


2016-2017 Awardees

  • Michel Nunez Lopez
  • Luis Sevilla
  • Samantha Berguin
  • Manuella Tshala