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Middlebury students regularly receive Fulbright Grants, Marshall Scholarships, and other competitive fellowships.

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College Sees Continued Growth in National Fellowships, Scholarships

June 12, 2017


MIDDLEBURY, Vt. – Every year Middlebury students and young alumni receive a number of fellowships that send them across the globe, including Fulbright Grants, Marshall Scholarships, and Watson Fellowships. A fellowship is a highly competitive opportunity that can provide the recipient with funding for graduate education, postgraduate research, and self-designed projects, or funds for undergraduate support and summer enrichment. Fellowhips support a wide range of fields, from the study of language or minority rights to science, math, and engineering. They often involve international travel and living abroad. 

“I’m delighted that we had another strong year with a number of students receiving fellowships,” said Lisa Gates, associate dean for fellowships and research. “I urge all faculty who know students who could be strong applicants for future competitions to encourage the students to talk with me. Faculty members can also send me students’ names and I will contact them directly."

According to Gates, nationally competitive fellowships offer more than funding–they may also provide important professional networks. “The application process itself is also highly beneficial as it forces students and young alumni to take the time to reflect on what they want to do and why they want to do it,” said Gates. “I hear this repeatedly from both candidates who win and candidates who don’t.” 

In any given year, about 15-18 students and young alumni receive a fellowship. Gates says that the College has experienced an increase over the last decade in the number of fellowships recipients. “We’ve seen real growth in Fulbrights, effectively doubling application numbers and awards,” said Gates. “We’ve been a strong school in the Watson fellowship competition and had a wonderful stretch of Truman scholars–five selected over a four-year period.”

The Fellowships Office created the list below of fellowship and scholarship winners and those who received honorable mentions during the 2016-2017 academic year. The awards include those that require nomination by Middlebury College and selected additional awards.

CRITICAL LANGUAGE SCHOLARSHIP
Sponsored by Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs of the U.S. Department of State, the Critical Language Scholarship Program is a fully funded overseas language and cultural immersion program for American undergraduate and graduate students, with the goal of broadening the base of Americans studying and mastering critical languages. 

Winner: Mahli Knutson ’20 (undeclared), Chinese

Alternate: William O’Neal ’20 (undeclared), Arabic 

HUMANITY IN ACTION FELLOWSHIP
The Humanity in Action Fellowship brings together international groups of Fellows to study minority rights and produce original research exploring how and why individuals and societies, past and present, have resisted intolerance and protected democratic values. Programs take place for five weeks during the summer in selected European and US cities. 

Winner: Robert Brisson ’19 (Comparative Literature)

Daniel Buchman ’18.5 (Economics) 

J. WILLIAM FULBRIGHT GRANT
The Fulbright US Student Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the United States and other countries. Fulbright Grants enable graduating seniors and young alumni to undertake research or advanced study or teach English as a second language (ETA) for up to one year in a foreign country.

Winners: Caroline Agsten ’17 (International & Global Studies-East Asia) ETA, Taiwan

Toby Aicher ’16.5 (Molecular Biology & Biochemistry) Study/Research, Spain; award declined

Isabella Carey ’17 (Russian, Sociology & Anthropology) ETA, Bulgaria

Kyle Dickey ’17 (International & Global Studies-Latin America) ETA, Brazil

Kristina Frye '17 (International Politics & Economics) Study/Research, Bulgaria and Romania

Andrew Holtz ’16.5 (German, Molecular Biology & Biochemistry) Study/Research, Germany

Michelle Kim ’17 (History) ETA Russia

Maeve Moynihan ’17 (History) ETA Spain

Brenna Roets ’17 (Molecular Biology & Biochemistry) Study/Research, Japan

William Weightman ’17 (International Politics & Economics) Study/Research, China

Alternate: Jack DesBois ’15.5 (Music) Study/Research, UK


MARSHALL SCHOLARSHIP
Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a graduate degree in the United Kingdom. Up to forty scholars are selected each year to study at graduate level at a UK institution in any field of study. As future leaders, with a lasting understanding of British society, Marshall Scholars strengthen the enduring relationship between the British and American peoples, their governments and their institutions. 

Winner: Hasher Nisar ’16.5 (Political Science) Islamic Studies, Oxford University
 
NSF GRADUATE RESEARCH FELLOWSHIP 
The National Science Foundation (NSF) promotes careers in science, math, and engineering. The award provides funding for up to three years of graduate study leading to a master’s or doctoral degree.

Winners: Bartholomew DiFiore ’09 (Biology, English and American Literatures), Geosciences-Marine Biology, Yale University

Sarah Guth ’15 (Biology, Environmental Studies), Life Sciences-Ecology

Zachary Perzan ’14.5 (Geology), Geosciences-Paleoclimate

Avery Jean Schiff ’15 (Physics), Geosciences, Solar Physics, University of Colorado, Boulder

Honorable Mention:

Jing He ’17 (Physics), Geosciences-Physical Oceanography

Amanda Kaminsky ’13 (Chinese), Social Sciences- Cultural Anthropology, University of Michigan

Jessica Kong ’15 (Chemistry), Chemistry- Chemical Structure, Dynamics, and Mechanism, University of Washington

Hannah Postel ’13 (International Politics & Economics), Social Sciences-Public Policy

Cynthia Wang-Claypool ’12 (Biology), Life Sciences- Evolutionary Biology

SCHWARZMAN SCHOLARSHIP
Designed to prepare the next generation of global leaders, the Schwarzman Scholars program prepares students to understand China’s role in global trends. Up to two hundred scholars annually are selected to develop their leadership skills and professional networks through a one-year master’s degree at Tsinghua University in Beijing. 

Winner: Naina Qayyum (Economics) ’15

THOMAS J. WATSON FELLOWSHIP
Watson Fellowships enable seniors of unusual promise to engage in focused independent study and travel abroad after graduation. The award is $30,000. Up to 50 Fellows are selected from the 40 participating colleges.

Winner: Evelin Toth '17 (Environmental Studies)

Additional Awards Reported

BOLD Women’s Leadership Network Scholarship
Emilie Seavey ’18 (Biology, Environmental Studies)

Institute for Responsible Citizenship
Joshua Howard ‘19

Posse Ubben Scholarship
Paola Meza ’19 (Neuroscience) 

Princeton in African Fellowship
Hannah Blair ’17 (International and Global Studies), Benin

Sarah Pollnow’14 (History), Botswana

Vermont Law School Scholarship
Nicha Rakpanichmanee ’05 (History of Art & Architecture)