Student Spotlight

Bailey Scholarship: Making Dreams Come True


Many students dream of studying abroad during their time at Oklahoma State University, but making that dream a reality can be financially overwhelming. Kelsea Hull recently returned from a trip of a lifetime to France, and it was in part a huge thanks to the Bailey Study Abroad Scholarship.

Hull is earning three degrees at OSU while being in the Honor’s College – Bachelor of Science in Mathematics; Bachelor of Arts in French and Political Science all while also getting a minor in religious studies.
“I have always wanted to do study abroad, but it was really expensive to me,” Hull said. “So when I was looking to applying for programs, the Bailey was available for the abroad course I wanted to take. It was a great experience and I would have not been able to go without the Bailey.”
The Bailey Family Memorial Trust was established in 1982 to provide scholarship support for full-time OSU students to study the liberal arts by J.B. Bailey and his brother Richard E. Bailey in memory of Ida L. Davis and Lalla D. Bailey, their grandmother and mother.
J.B. Bailey received his bachelor of arts degree in economics in 1943, and his master’s degree in political science in 1951, both from OSU. J.B. had the opportunity to travel while he served in World War II, and it expanded his worldview. After establishing a successful career as a lawyer, J.B. wanted to expose his younger brother, Richard, to the significance of traveling and the lessons from it. Richard then traveled the world with his brother and learned through experiences outside of the classroom. Richard went on to be a longtime OSU humanities professor and founder of the first study abroad program in OSU’s College of Arts and Sciences.
Hull was able to spend two months in Grenoble, France where she participated in cultural events and weekly labs. Hull, the only OSU student at the program, was among 14 other US students where she found comfort in times of loneliness to speak English with the other students. The school was comprised of mostly international students from China, Spain and the US which she added diversity to the trip. The class structure in France was similar to the classes she took at OSU.
“I was ready because the Foreign Language Department at OSU does such a good job of preparing students,” Hull said. “There were students from other universities in the Study Abroad program that weren’t prepared for the class to be completely in French.”
“I stayed with a host mom and she didn’t speak any English which was a little overwhelming to realize when I first moved in,” Hull said. “I tried to make an effort to not speak English and it helped a lot in my ability to comfortably speak the language but it was so cool getting to interact with so many people from different cultures and getting to see that I actually can survive in another language.”
After a couple of weeks, Hull was feeling more comfortable and with the ease of traveling, she took advantage of the time and was able to visit Poland, London, Eddenberg and numerous destinations in France. While in Geneava, she took an excursion to tour the UN. Seeing the rooms where significant treaties had been signed or laws had been passed was an inspiring moment for Hull. Her future goals include continuing on to grad school and work as a Foreign Service Officer and fortunately she was able to get a little closer to that by studying abroad with the Bailey Memorial Scholarship.
“That was the only reason I was able to afford to go,” Hull said. “There was worry that if I didn’t get the scholarship, I was going to have to cancel the program.
“Instead, I was fully funded by the Bailey scholarship which covered everything except personal expenses. It was a massive relief. ”
Since the first awards, more than $2 million has been expended from the trust, allowing 275 OSU students to study in 36 different countries. From the first year in which two students were awarded $18,000, the program has grown so that this year’s recipients have received funds totaling $104,000.


OSU offers numerous short- and long-term study abroad courses that range from a couple of weeks to yearlong. During the courses abroad, students get amerced in culture making the experience the ideal learning experience.
The applications for the 2018-2019 Bailey scholarships are due February 1, 2018.
For more information on the Bailey Family Memorial scholarship program please contact Dr. William Smith at 405-744-5658 or at