Frequently Asked Questions
Regarding Funding Awards
Why Study Abroad?
Study Abroad programs provide unparalleled learning opportunities that we believe every student should experience. Additionally, college students and graduates with international experience have greater access to lucrative internships and career opportunities in the nation's top think tanks, the foreign service, and international businesses.
Why focus on nontraditional travel?
First Trip promotes global citizenship and holds true that the path to global citizenship is initiated when we embed ourselves into another culture far different from our own. Therefore, countries that are comparable to the United States in overall standard of living, culture, and way of life are not eligible destinations.
What about countries listed as Very High?
Scholarships are available for students traveling to countries ranked lower than Very High on the Human Development Index (HDI). We are unable to make exceptions. Only countries whose human development have been ranked as High, Medium, or Low on the latest HDI are considered eligible destinations.
What are the scholarship amounts?
Currently, First Trip scholarships are awarded up to $1,500.00 and are determined by applicant need, destination, and availability of funds. Specialized award amounts vary and are stated on the webpage. Applicants are automatically considered for these awards and will be notified if selected.
How long is the application essay?
There is no essay required for First Trip scholarships. We only ask our award recipients to submit a short narrative of their experience once they return to the U.S. which may be used later for scholar spotlights articles, outreach, and promotional purposes.
What is the GPA requirement?
There is no GPA requirement for First Trip scholarships. According to the U.S. State Department, studying abroad not only expands a student’s world view—it has the potential to advance their career. We believe study abroad should be accessible to all students and not solely high academic achievers.
Can community college students apply?
Yes! Most scholarships are exclusively available for students enrolled in four-year institutions. To increase inclusivity, students enrolled in accredited community colleges are encouraged to apply for First Trip scholarships as well.
Can students who've traveled before apply?
Successful First Trip scholars are students who have never traveled outside the United States. However, we understand that some individuals may have only traveled to Canada or to another country when they were very young. Candidates in this position will have an opportunity to explain why they believe that they are still first-time travelers as part of the application process.
Can students participate in multiple programs?
Not only is it allowed, we encourage it! It is common for students to receive their first passports with First Trip, then go on to receive First Trip scholarships. Recently, two travel scholarship recipients were accepted into the newly launched GCM program.
Are passport workshops free?
Passport application instruction and financial assistance (vouchers) are provided to all participants and academic institutions free of charge. All First Trip programs and scholarships are supported by generous donations from individuals and corporate sponsors.
Can students self-nominate for GCM?
How do I become involved?
In addition to financial support, many dynamic individuals choose to volunteer their time, talents, and global expertise as workshop facilitators and GCM program mentors. We value all forms of generosity that support our mission. Please contact us below to learn how you can help!
How do we partner with First Trip?
First Trip is honored to partner with academic institutions and corporate sponsors that are dedicated to advancing minority representation in study abroad and international affairs. Organizations interested in partnership should contact us below to learn more about the process.
Why become an academic partner?
Students affiliated with our academic partners enjoy priority access to First Trip programs and scholarship awards (stated requirements must be met). Additionally, academic partners join a growing consortium of colleges and universities dedicated to promoting minority accessibility to study abroad and international programs.
Why become a corporate partner?
Corporate partners not only benefit from our 501c3 designation, but are also widely recognized as champions of inclusion and education equality in the nation’s capital and beyond. Our corporate sponsors also receive quarterly updates in the form of student testimonials and First Trip publications.
Is company matching available?
Yes! Employee matching gift programs are corporate giving programs in which a company matches donations made by employees to First Trip. A corporate matching program is an easy way to double your contribution to us!