Robert Eller Study Abroad Scholarship

-A Grant Program of the Cedar Falls Community Foundation
The Robert Eller Scholarship has been established to foster the educational, professional, and personal growth of one or more undergraduate students attending the University of Northern Iowa by providing scholarship funds to assist with the cost of study outside the U.S. for a student whose previous travel and study experiences abroad have been limited.


All applicants must meet the following qualifications:

  • Iowa residency (Iowa birth or three years of Iowa residency)
  • Full-time enrollment at UNI in a degree-granting program with a minimum of 2.75 GPA
  • At least sophomore status and must have at least one semester of study at UNI remaining after program abroad
  • Minimal previous independent travel abroad

Desired Qualification:

  • Completion of UNI’s foreign language graduation requirement before the initiation of, or during, the program abroad
  • Note: Participants of non-UNI programs, not-for-credit programs or UNI programs not sponsored by the UNI Study Abroad Center are ineligible for this scholarship.

Scholarship Application Deadlines 

  • For spring semester programs: The last working day of October.
  • For fall and academic-year programs: The last working day of March.

Application Process

The application is partially online and is similar to your study abroad application. To apply, click on the apply now button below. Note, your application will go into the "committed" stage automatically. This does not commit you to the study abroad program. It is an automatic stage the scholarship goes into for technical purposes. 

Once you open up your online application, you will be able to download the form that contains the application and a list of the required documents. 

Submit the following documents to the Study Abroad Center, 103 East Bartlett Hall, attention: Stephanie Rojas
  1. The application form
  2. Essay detailing the anticipated educational, professional, and personal growth benefits of participation in the program. Limit the essay to 300 words, double spaced. 
  3. Resume including service and leadership activities, previous travel experience, association with persons from other countries, and foreign language study. Limit the resume to 2 pages.
  4. Detailed information on your proposed program abroad, estimated costs, and academic credits to be earned (two-page limit)
  5. Sources and amounts of funding currently for studies at UNI and anticipated for period abroad (from UNI Office of Student Financial Aid)
  6. Copy of grade audit (unofficial transcript)
  7. Two letters of recommendation, one from a UNI faculty member and one from outside the university

Evaluation Criteria

Applications will be evaluated on the quality of the proposal, including but not limited to the quality of writing evidenced in the essay; the letters of recommendation; the student's readiness for the proposed program; and demonstrated financial need.  Preference will be given to students who fulfill the application requirements and procedures and have little or no previous travel experience outside the United States.  The Scholarship Committee will interview finalist(s) and select recipient(s).

Responsibilities of the Scholarship Recipient

  • Photograph and Permission for Publicity. Once the recipient accepts the scholarship, they must furnish a “head shot” photograph and give written permission for the Cedar Falls Community Foundation to include their photograph and information from their application in Foundation publicity materials.
  • Report. A written summary discussing the academic and personal benefits of program participation must be submitted to the Study Abroad Center within 30 days of return to the U.S. Additionally, recipients must send letters or postcards to Mr. Eller's family while abroad (1-2 per semester and the address will be provided upon receipt of the scholarship).
  • Presentations. The scholarship recipient will be expected to attend a UNI Emeritus Association luncheon and discuss their study abroad experience. Additionally, recipients are expected to share with other UNI students. 

Number of Scholarship and Funding Level

Award amount(s) will be approximately $5,000. The number of scholarships awarded will vary. Awards will be given on the following schedule: 75% of the funds at the beginning of the semester (based on UNI schedule) from when the study abroad experience is taking place and 25% upon completion of all the post-return scholarship obligation.