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OCCC Awarded $35,000 Grant to Build Study Abroad Capacity

OCCC Awarded $35,000 Grant to Build Study Abroad Capacity

Member Mention BLOG

Oklahoma City Community College and McMurry University in Abilene, Texas, were awarded a $35,000 grant from the U.S. Department of State’s Increase and Diversify Education Abroad for U.S. Students (IDEAS) Program. Both OCCC and McMurry will use the funds to expand study abroad programs at each institution.

Professor of Biology Travis Draud will be leading the efforts at OCCC. The goal of the project is to build capacity among faculty to plan and implement for-credit study abroad programs, increase the number and variety of study abroad opportunities and increase the number and diversity of students participating in study abroad programs.

“This grant will allow our students to have new and expanded opportunities,” said OCCC President Dr. Mautra Staley Jones. “An education through a study abroad program will open doors that many of our students may have never dreamed possible, and for that, we are grateful to the U.S. Department of State for awarding us this transformative grant.”

Forty-four colleges and universities across the country will use the IDEAS grants to create, expand and/or diversify American student mobility overseas in support of U.S. foreign policy goals. This U.S. Government program is funded by the U.S. Department of State and supported in its implementation by World Learning.

“The U.S. Department of State is committed to supporting U.S. colleges and universities as they continue to rebuild study abroad capacity impacted by the global pandemic. Our IDEAS grant recipients reflects the full diversity of the U.S. higher education system – including community colleges, Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs), rural institutions, and more – and we are committed to working with them to build study abroad programs that are accessible for Americans of all backgrounds and that provide more opportunities for American students to engage with people in more diverse destinations around the world,” said Heidi Manley, USA Study Abroad Chief, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. 

Since 2016, the IDEAS Program has awarded 145 grants to 139 institutions in 48 states and territories to create, expand and diversify their U.S. study abroad programs in 71 countries. For a full list of 2022 IDEAS grant recipients, visit

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