Ball State University has been selected by the Institute of International Education (IIE) to receive an IIE American Passport Project grant that will enable 25 students to obtain a U.S. passport and support their study abroad journeys. Ball State is one of 40 institutions in the United States to be selected. 

Ball State’s Study Abroad Office will recruit and select the 25 eligible Passport Scholars starting in early Fall 2022. These students will receive free passport photos, guidance on the process of applying for a passport, and funding to cover passport application fees. 

Throughout the 2022-2023 academic year, the cohort of Passport Scholars will also have ongoing support to help identify relevant study abroad programs and scholarships. 

“We are honored to have been selected by IIE for the American Passport Project,” said John Jensen, director of the Study Abroad program at Ball State’s Rinker Center for Global Affairs. “Current research indicates that 97 percent of study abroad students found a job within 12 months of graduating, and a majority of study abroad students believe that the experience enabled them to be adaptable to diverse workplaces. That is why we are thrilled to be selected for this grant; our students will benefit from the transformational study abroad experiences that prepare them for success in today’s global workforce.” 

Through the American Passport Project, IIE plans to assist 10,000 students in receiving their passports by the end of this decade. 

Each selected institution identifies up to 25 of its first-year Pell Grant-eligible students and provides innovative programming, engagement efforts, advising, and support for the identified students—with the goal of sending them on a study abroad program during their college experience.