Many students don’t have the opportunity to experience an international experience throughout their college matriculation (including getting a passport) due to the cost.
Making international education a part of students’ education is the most effective and accessible means for students to develop needed skills because it pushes a student to get out of her comfort zone to experience another culture, language, environment and education system. It teaches students to appreciate difference and diversity firsthand, and enables them to recognize – and then dismiss – stereotypes they may have held about people they had never met.
Learning how to interact with people from other countries and cultures equips future leaders in all sectors to address urgent issues – from curing diseases and finding energy solutions, to fighting terrorism and hunger – shared across borders.
Providing deserving college students, who might not otherwise have the opportunity, with an opportunity to gain global exposure by providing them with their first passport, international flight, and global abroad program.
Our founder, Deidre Mathis, traveled abroad for the very first time as a 19-year old college sophomore to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. It was during that educational Alternative Spring Break trip where she caught the travel bug. Deidre credits that international experience with changing her life forever. She went on to move abroad 3 times and travel over 40 countries on all 7 continents. She recently opened the US’s first Black owned hostel, Wanderstay Houston.
If Deidre had not received a $1,500 stipend from her University to pay for that study abroad program, she may have never gotten her passport and traveled abroad that spring break.
In 2019 she founded the Wander Abroad scholarship so she could give that same experience to deserving college students across the United States.