A conversation in the backseat of a taxi in India set University of Missouri alumnus Matthew Busch on a path to becoming a Fulbright finalist.
One student and one alumna from the University of Missouri are adding to already impressive lists of accolades after accepting the 2017 Thomas R. Pickering Fellowship. Junior Taylor Cofield earned the undergraduate fellowship, while May 2016 graduate Sasha Gubina received the graduate fellowship.
It was an article about beekeeping that Megan Tyminski wrote for the Columbia Daily Tribune that started Tyminski on a path towards the Udall Scholarship. The article caught the attention of MU Director of Fellowships Tim Parshall, who contacted Tyminski and encouraged her to consider applying for the Udall Scholarship.
Senior Brendan Marsh was not sure why he was being led into the Chancellor’s Conference Room in Jesse Hall. He was told he was needed for a photo, but once he entered, he found a Chancellor’s Staff meeting being held.
University of Missouri junior Taylor Cofield has been selected for the Harry S Truman Scholarship, a nationally-competitive award that supports students dedicated to public service. Selections for the Truman Scholarship are chosen on the basis of their academic success and leadership accomplishments, as well as their likelihood of becoming public service leaders.
When Samantha Franks was notified of her selection for a grant from the Fulbright U.S. Student Program her emotions ranged from relief to disbelief.
To master the Arabic language, MU junior Taylor Cofield knew she had to do more than take classes and work with a tutor. Studying in Madaba, Jordan this past summer gave her the opportunity to not only practice her Arabic, but to immerse herself in another country’s culture.
Mizzou junior Maria Kalaitzandonakes has been awarded the Harry S Truman Scholarship, a nationally-competitive award that supports students dedicated to public service.
It was the Friday before Spring Break when Helen Bass was summoned to a meeting with the Office of Service-Learning staff. Awaiting her arrival to the second floor of Lowry Hall were MU Interim Chancellor Hank Foley, College of Arts & Science Dean Michael O’Brien and Professor of Economics Jeff Milyo. They were there to make a special announcement: Bass had been selected to receive the Mark Twain Fellowship.
Senior Marcos Barcellona has been conducting research at Mizzou to study the development of a drug delivery system that is responsive to a range of external stimuli, which means the user could control the rate of release of the drug.
University of Missouri seniors Nicholas Bira and Ethan Zars have earned honorable mention recognition from the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation.
Mizzou has had numerous finalists for the Truman Scholarship and that list continues to grow as two MU juniors—Maria Kalaitzandonakes and Kate Hargis—have been selected as 2016 finalists.
Every year, thousands of students around the world put hours upon hours of work into fellowship applications. They write and rewrite essays 10 to 20 times over. They prepare for every possible question an interviewer could ever throw at them. They refine their research proposals and then refine them again. Applying for nationally competitive fellowships essentially becomes another class.
Anurag Chandran, now an MU senior, will soon embark on another transition. After graduating in May with degrees in political science and economics, he will head off to China to attend Tsinghua University in Beijing as a Schwarzman Scholar.
As a freshman at Jefferson City High School, Emily Waggoner was having trouble fitting in. She was not performing well on the school’s softball team, and she was losing friends. She struggled with the transition to high school. That adversity eventually led to an eating disorder that left Waggoner weighing just 93 pounds.
After being diagnosed with a congenital heart defect at the age of 10, MU senior Kevin Bird underwent a procedure that, thanks to medical research, will prevent him from having to have a second procedure for at least 20 years. The research his pediatric cardiologist conducted reduced the amount of procedures Bird will require throughout his life. That experience helped Bird recognize research’s potential to better the lives of others.
Among the floats and dignitaries recognized during Mizzou’s 2015 Homecoming parade was a trio of Mizzou students who were recently awarded prestigious fellowships and the 2015 class of Kemper Fellows.
The University of Missouri’s Kinder Institute on Constitutional Democracy, an interdisciplinary program that began in 2014, promotes scholarship and teaching on the American constitutional and democratic traditions. The Kinder Institute's signiture programs include a Minor and Certificate in American Constitutional Democracy and the Kinder Scholars Program, which provides undergraduates with the opportunity to study and work in Washington, D.C during the summer term.
Thanks to his work with the Fellowships Office, MU School of Law Professor Ben Trachtenberg interacts regularly with undergraduates despite not teaching any undergraduate courses.
Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. The Program operates in over 155 countries worldwide. Twelve Mizzou students were among the semifinalists for a 2015 Fulbright Scholarship, including four named as alternates.
Emily Waggoner has come a long way since being diagnosed with the eating disorder anorexia nervosa as a high school freshman. Now, Waggoner is concluding her junior year at Mizzou, a year highlighted by her selection as a Truman Scholar.
On the day before Spring Break, Jessica Anania was summoned to the office of MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin. A few days earlier Anania had interviewed for the Mark Twain Fellowship and she thought the meeting with Loftin was to answer follow-up questions before the final selection was made. However, upon arriving at Loftin’s office, the chancellor congratulated her on being the award’s recipient.
The University of Missouri nominated four students—the maximum permitted—for the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and all four received recognition from the Goldwater Foundation.
Having received the Marshall Scholarship while attending Bucknell University, biological sciences professor Sarah Bush understands what goes into earning a fellowship. That’s why when she was asked to be part of a panel to help applicants prepare to interview for fellowships like the Marshall Scholarship, it was an easy decision.
Throughout 2015, the U.S. Department of State will celebrate 75 years of international exchange programs. The U.S. Department of State administers exchange programs for more than 50,000 participants each year. Shortly after World War I, the United States realized that fostering mutual understanding among different cultures could have a greater impact than weapons. This insight led to the U.S. Department of State forming a Division of Cultural Relations, and the first exchange program visitor arrived in the United States from Ecuador in 1940.
Imagine arriving in a foreign country with one piece of luggage, severe jet lag and no idea how to get to your destination. That was the reality for Andrew Allee, a biochemistry major at MU, when he arrived in Berlin for the RISE internship through the German Academic Exchange Service last summer.
Jessica Anania is not your average college student. A triple major, studying international reporting, political science and psychology, Anania is also a world traveler, social justice advocate and research assistant.
Years of preparation and mentoring prepare Mizzou students for prestigious fellowships.
Immigration is part of Fares Akremi’s family history. His father immigrated to the United States from Tunisia at age 28 and his mother’s aunt was granted asylum as a German Jew in the early 1930s. Akremi’s uncle hasn’t been heard from since 1988, when he attempted to leave North Africa.
MIZZOU ENDEAVORS is produced by the Office of Undergraduate Studies. This issue showcases MU undergraduate students excelling through research, fellowships, dedicated mentors, and more.
From Mizzou Magazine
Mizzou junior Samantha Franks received a position in the Fulbright Summer Institute and spent the summer studying at the University of Bristol in England.
The David L. Boren Scholarship funds study abroad opportunities to areas of the world that are critical to the future security of United States interests.
While the Kingdom of Morocco is not commonly discussed among the areas critical to the U.S. national security, many Boren Scholars visit the country and next year MU sophomore Ida Sophie Winter will join that list. Winter is one of two Mizzou undergraduates to receive the Boren Scholarship for the 2014-15 academic year.
Nicole Monnier and Sheila Grant have been recognized for their efforts as mentors by being named inaugural recipients of the Ann K. Covington Award. The award recognizes members of the University faculty or staff who have mentored an undergraduate applicant for at least one nationally competitive fellowship.
Two University of Missouri students have earned the opportunity to spend the upcoming summer in the United Kingdom. Kiersten Kuc and Samantha Franks have garnered positions in the Fulbright Summer Institute to the U.K.
Five years ago, Sarah Swartz’s goal was to receive an associate’s degree. Now, after earning a fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF), she will pursue a PhD.
Zach Parolin spent Spring Break during his sophomore year sleeping on the streets of North Texas. The idea behind the five nights of self-induced homelessness was to raise awareness of the issue of youth homelessness and to honor his mother, who was displaced from her biological family during her teenage years.
Students were selected for the Academic Distinction Award based on the following three criteria:
- showing evidence of extraordinary intellectual curiosity;
- actively seeking knowledge beyond the classroom and striving to share that knowledge with public audiences for a broader impact;
- significantly contributing to the academic atmosphere at the University of Missouri.
At the age of 18, Shakked Halperin spent a year volunteering with Ethiopian children teaching high school math, English, percussion and art. Through that experience he developed a focus on improving the lives of others. Next fall, he will take that focus to the University of Cambridge after being named a recipient of the prestigious Gates Cambridge Scholarship.
Even in today’s society, classic novels like Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice are still capturing the hearts of readers. For MU English major Grace McNamee, the British author is also her topic of research.
Rebecca Taylor is one of three Mizzou seniors who will spend next year abroad after earning a Fulbright Scholarship from the U.S. State Department. Joining Taylor is Kasandra Bienhoff, who has been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship grant for Bulgaria, and Claire Friedrichsen, who earned a Fulbright Study/Research grant for Italy.
Mizzou senior Jordan Bartlebaugh says research has defined her undergraduate career. Now, thanks to a fellowship from the National Science Foundation (NSF), she will continue to conduct research following graduation.
Applying for nationally-competitive awards and fellowships can be both challenging and rewarding. On April 10, a celebration was held to recognize MU students who have applied for those awards and fellowships with support from the MU Fellowships Office.
Mizzou senior Xavier Billingsley has had a busy undergraduate experience at Mizzou. He has directed an Alternative Spring Break trip, served as a Summer Welcome leader and interned at the United States Embassy in Jamaica. In addition, he was the 2012 Homecoming King and, probably most notably, he served as the president of the Missouri Student Association in 2012.
Now, he is preparing for life after graduation.
Lindsey Murray, BS ’03, is one of 39 recipients of the Gates Cambridge Scholarship, one of the world's most celebrated honors for post-baccalaureate study. The highly-competitive Gates Cambridge Scholarships are full-cost awards given to applicants outside the United Kingdom to pursue a full-time postgraduate degree in any subject available at the University of Cambridge.
The process of pursuing a fellowship can be daunting. While applying and interviewing for the Rhodes Trust Scholarship, Jaclyn Herr says she gained an “even-worse-than- before addiction to coffee and maybe some minor hair loss.”
More importantly, she gained a better sense of self-confidence.
For the second-consecutive year, six University of Missouri students have been awarded the U.S. State Department’s Fulbright Scholarship for 2012-13, which will allow them to study, teach and conduct research in a variety of regions around the world.
MU student Sammie Hill, who just completed her junior year, has been awarded the Critical Language Scholarship (CLS), which will allow her to study Arabic in Tunis, Tunisia for two months this summer.
On April 10, the University of Missouri hosted a celebration to recognize undergraduate and graduate students who have applied for nationally-competitive awards and fellowships with support of the MU Fellowships Office.
Tim Parshall, who has worked with the MU Assessment Resource Center for the past 24 years, has been named the director of Fellowships at the University of Missouri. He will start in his new role on Sept. 1.