McDonough Undergraduate Selected as Prestigious Gilman International Scholar

A headshot of Judith Obregon in front of a path with trees behind her.

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Judith Obregon (B’23) has been selected for the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program by the U.S Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The program chose more than 1,500 undergraduate students to serve as effective citizen ambassadors to increase cross cultural understanding between the U.S. and their host countries.

A Gilman Scholarship enables American students to gain proficiency in diverse languages and cultures, which will enhance their academic and career development. The recipients of this scholarship are American undergraduate students attending 467 U.S. colleges and representing all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Gilman Scholars will study or intern in 96 countries through the end of 2022.

“I feel very excited and honored to be selected from such a large pool of very qualified applicants — all from diverse backgrounds and seeking different career fields,” said Obregon. “My experience at Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business has shown me the importance of global competencies as a part of our global education.”

Obregon will study abroad in Spain, sharing her personal experiences as a female immigrant from Peru, while also helping underrepresented minorities where she will serve as a connection between the program and minority students. 

As a result of Obregon’s vast academic excellence and community service, she received many important national and state awards. She currently is a volunteer working on the international peace project in Colombia for the preservation of the indigenous community Wayuu social-cultural institutions and justice in the resolution of conflicts and advancing the cause of peace in these zones. Additionally, she has been developing a mentoring program in mathematics and chemistry for the Ethnoeducative Institution AKUAIPA in Colombia – La Guajira. 

“Through the global experience and guidance I am receiving for the U.S Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, I will increase mutual understanding of American culture and the people of other countries by means of educational and cultural exchange that assist in the development of peaceful relations. Additionally, it will be a unique experience to develop my knowledge of foreign cultures, language, and customs. My participation in this program will help to create new and lasting relationships between Spain and the United States of America,” said Obregon. 

Currently, Obregon has been advocating to establish a regional STEM Ecosystem, which she describes as a consortium to identify innovative and comprehensive ideas for inclusion and opportunities in STEM. Her long-term career goal is to work for the United Nations or an organization with a global similar mission. She envisions herself becoming a global entrepreneur to empower the powerless by using business as a tool to make the world a better place to live.

Obregon pictured with the officers of NOVA’s Women in Business Club.