Student NotesJuly 24, 2009
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USC College’s Fulbright Scholars
USC has 13 finalists for Fulbright scholarships this year, and seven students already have received acceptance letters. Three USC College students are headed to Mexico, Laos and Thailand.
Jeanette Acosta ’08 of Pasadena, Calif., earned a B.A. in political science with a minor in psychology. She will spend a year in Mexico examining how scholarships influence students’ decisions to pursue education or migration. She is particularly interested in exploring students’ attitudes and behaviors toward continuing their education, employment and migration in Zacatecas, Mexico.
Vanessa Hongsathavij ’09 of Pasadena, Calif., earned a B.A. in American studies and ethnicity, East Asian area studies and political science with a minor in Southeast Asia and its people. She will spend a year in Laos studying how the International Union for Conservation of Nature addresses the interests of three ethnic groups — the Lao, Yoane and Brao — and how the union’s development plan relates to the Biodiversity Conservation Corridors Initiative.
Chelsea Laun ’09 of Columbia, Mo., received her B.A. in English and communication in May. She will spend a year as an English teaching assistant in Thailand. Laun also plans to conduct volunteer work focusing on the Burmese refugee crisis in Thailand and study how urban and rural settings impact their ability to resettle.
Ronald E. McNair Scholars
Established in 1986 by the U.S. Department of Education and named for astronaut and Challenger space shuttle crew member Ronald E. McNair, the program encourages low-income and first-generation college students, and students from historically underrepresented ethnic groups to expand their educational opportunities by enrolling in Ph.D. programs and ultimately pursue academic careers.
McNair Scholars in the Class of 2009 were: EnJolí S.H. Alexander (political science/international relations); Arthur Fidel Argomaniz (sociology); Miguel Eduardo Del Mundo (political science/policy, planning and development); Apollo Delano Emeka (sociology/theatre arts); Nabila Farhin Jahan (physics); Aissa Llontop (psychology); Ray M. Martin (history); Nicole Moody (psychology/American pop culture); Brian Nguyen (biological sciences/kinesiology); Erin Kathleen O’Donnell (neuroscience/psychology); Jazminne Nicole Orozco (psychology/English); Abisola Oseni (psychology); Regina Pritchett (neuroscience/policy, planning and development); Jose Rios (psychology); Benjamin Rodriguez (classics/theatre/business entrepreneurship); Marni Sullivan (neuroscience/ anthropology); and Dione M. Surdez (creative writing/anthropology).
The Coro Fellows Program in Public Affairs is a full-time, nine month, graduate-level experiential leadership training program that prepares diverse, intelligent and committed individuals for effective and ethical leadership in the public affairs arena.
Sixty-eight fellows are chosen nationally annually through a highly competitive selection process, and this year USC College political science major Max Slavkin ’09 was selected.
All ten USC Renaissance Scholar Prize winners recognized at the university’s 126th commencement exercises majored or minored in disciplines within USC College. The prize, which provides $10,000 for post-baccalaureate study, recognizes graduating seniors who excel academically while pursuing two or more majors, or a major and minor, widely separated across the academic spectrum.
The College’s 2009 Renaissance Scholar Prize winners were: Robin Achen (English and neuroscience major); Kevin Chang (biological sciences major with a minor in medical anthropology); Marie Anne Cuevas (chemistry and religion major with minor in ancient religion and classic languages); Alexander Elias (philosophy and economics major with a minor in mathematical finance); Nathaniel Go (writing for screen and television, political science, linguistics, and East Asian languages and cultures major); Andrew Goldman (performing arts, piano, and neuroscience major); Kevin Ikuta (chemistry, biological sciences and philosophy major); Katherine Plemmons (theatre and English major with a minor in education in a pluralistic society); Andrew Pouw (comparative literature and biological sciences major); and Robyn Strumpf (political science and mechanical engineering major).
The Discovery Scholars program honors students who excel in the classroom while demonstrating the ability to create exceptional new scholarship or artistic works. Each year, an exemplary group of students is selected to receive $10,000 Discovery Scholar Prizes and this year four were graduates of the College: Natasha Azad (international relations/economics); Matthew Brennan (history/cinema-television); Naira Kuzmich (English/gender studies); Noelle Stiles (biophysics/ neuroscience).
The Global Scholars program recognizes undergraduates who have excelled in their studies both at home and abroad. Those selected as Global Scholar Prize winners receive $10,000 awards to be applied toward graduate study. This year Nicole Hummel (international relations/ cinema-television) and Sarah Malachowsky (international relations/human rights) earned this distinction.
Lewina Lee, (B.A., psychology and international relations, ’03) a Ph.D. candidate in clinical psychology (aging) in the College, received the Rockwell Dennis Hunt Award for her academic achievements, her embodiment of the university’s values and mission, and her continuing commitment to representing the university with honor as an alumna.