West Virginia Universitys Office of International Programs has awarded students a total of $12,500 in Global Education Opportunities (GEO) grants for 2007.

The recipients, chosen from more than 40 competitive applicants, include 15 undergraduates and one graduate student who will pursue international study, research and training experiences in Austria, China, Costa Rica, England, Japan and other countries.

Initiated in 1992, the GEO grants are supported by the Carter and Carolyn Jones, Ralph and Dora Nelson International Study Travel, W. Gerald and Carolyn E. Blaney and Gold and Blue Travelers endowments. Additional funds are provided by the Office of International Programs.

Awards range from $500 to $1,000 depending on the proposed project, length of program and financial need. Grants help defray international travel expenses for long-term projects and semester programs.

This years recipients represent the Davis College of Agriculture, Forestry and Consumer Sciences; College of Business and Economics; Eberly College of Arts and Sciences; College of Creative Arts; and the Perley Isaac Reed School of Journalism.

The winners, their hometowns, fields of study and destinations are:

  • Joshua Bennett, Morgantown, horticulture (Austria)
  • Teri Chuprinko, Morgantown, broadcast news (Japan)
  • Cassandra Garcia, Fairmont, international studies (Estonia and Spain)
  • Leigh Anne Hedrick, Springfield, Ohio, business and foreign languages (Costa Rica)
  • Michelle Kinsley, Morgantown, international studies (Italy)
  • Megan Leight, Bridgeport, art history (Northern Ireland)
  • John Pino, Oak Hill, international studies (Mexico)
  • Micha Piranio, Purgitsville, animal and nutritional science (South Africa)
  • Emily Renzelli, Bridgeport, political science (South Africa)
  • Franklin Rexroad, Glen Dale, international studies (Japan)
  • Vanessa Royse, Morgantown, social work (Thailand)
  • Patricia Shaver, Cowen, international studies (Japan)
  • Charles Smith, St. Albans, business management and philosophy (England)
  • Brittany Swisher, Fairmont, broadcast news (Ireland)
  • Ariana Winter, Morgantown, foreign languages (Hong Kong)
  • Joshua Manning, Willis, Va., ceramics (China)