Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship
The Gilman International Scholarship is a national one, with 3600 awards ranging of up to $5,000 during this academic year alone. If you are going abroad to study a less commonly studied language deemed critical to security of the U.S. (A list is available on the website.), you could be eligible for an additional $3000 award. Students planning on studying in Japan should definitely apply for a Gilman Scholarship and supplementary critical language award.
They scholarship is described on the Gilman website in these terms:
“The U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship is a grant program that enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, thereby gaining skills critical to our national security and economic competitiveness.
The Gilman Scholarship Program is open to U.S. citizen undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study and intern abroad programs worldwide.”
Applications are normally accepted in October and March. First a notice is sent to the Office of International Education. Then an email goes out to eligible students. Interested students complete their applications and both the Office of International Education and the Office of Financial Aid certify and submit the applications online to complete the process. For general Gilman eligibility guidelines, please see here.