CMC students are in the front rank of prestigious scholarship winners

CMC students have always vied for prestigious scholarships and fellowships among an often worldwide field of highly competitive applicants, and invariably, the College makes an amazing showing each year.

The College continues its enviable track record of success with CMCers finishing in the top rank of the most prestigious academic awards programs in the U.S. This year, 14 students from CMC have received grant awards from some of the world’s leading academic institutions.

“I am delighted that so many CMCers have earned prestigious fellowships this year,” says Brian Davidson, Director of Fellowships Advising in the Center for Global Education at CMC.

“These fellowships are not just recognition of the students’ hard work, leadership, and dedication to others—they also provide students with the support necessary to continue their paths towards fulfilling their passions and becoming thoughtful and engaged citizens.”

CMCers have earned fellowships that will take them across the world, from Malawi and Spain to Morocco and Cyprus, just to name a few. “I am confident that the experiences they will have—learning languages, teaching English, working with NGOs, and conducting research—will have a great impact not only on them, but on the people around them,” Davidson says.

One student, Anoush Baghdassarian ’17, won two fellowships this year. Davidson says that it has been a pleasure to work with Anoush, whose dedication to human rights and refugee issues is taking her on two significant fellowships this summer.

First, Anoush will travel to Berlin as CMC’s first Humanity in Action Fellow since 2008, where she will spend a month studying the legacy of human rights in the context of the Holocaust and present-day Germany. She will then embark to Armenia where, as a recipient of the Davis Projects for Peace award, she and partner Ani Schug PO ’17 will implement a project to document, preserve, and retell the stories of the Syrian-Armenian refugees who have fled the crisis in Syria.

CMC also celebrates a couple of “firsts” in 2017—Quincy Brown ’19 is the first student from CMC to receive an internal 5C Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, and Tiana Steverson Pugh ’19, is the first recipient from the College of a Rangel Summer Enrichment Program fellowship.

“I am particularly proud that Quincy Brown became CMC’s first recipient of the Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellowship,” Davidson says, “which will provide research funding and mentorship to him throughout next two years at CMC. Quincy is interested in studying issues concerning race, gentrification, and urban development, especially as they relate to rapid transit systems, and will be working with 5C faculty including Pitzer Professor Lance Neckar and CMC Professor Lily Geismer on projects related to this interest. Quincy is a budding scholar, who I expect to make an impact on the field of urban studies.”

Following is a list of CMCers who (as of May 10) have received scholarships and fellowships or who, in some cases, declined their awards. We congratulate them all on their achievements.

Fulbright Scholarship

The Fulbright Scholarship Program awards merit-based grants for international educational exchange for students, scholars, teachers, professionals, scientists, and artists. The program provides 8,000 grants annually to undertake graduate study, advanced research, university lecturing and classroom teaching.

Competitively selected U.S. citizens may become eligible for scholarships to study, conduct research, or utilize their talents abroad; and citizens of other countries may qualify to do the same in the U.S.

More than 360,000 Fulbrighters from the U.S. and other countries have participated in the program since its inception in 1946. The Fulbright Program is one of the most prestigious awards programs worldwide, operating in more than 160 countries. To date, 57 Fulbright alumni have won Nobel Prizes, 82 have won Pulitzer Prizes, 29 are MacArthur Foundation Fellows and 37 Fulbright alumni have served as heads of state or government.


Athena Andrew-Sfeir ’17, English Teaching Assistant, Cyprus

Jordan Bosiljevac ’17, English Teaching Assistant, Mexico

Sophie Breider ’17, English Teaching Assistant, Spain (Galicia)

Alicia Frausto ’17, English Teaching Assistant, India

Awarded Fellowship but Declined

Syed Umar Farooq ’17, Research (Economic Development), Jordan

Benjamin Fusek ’17, English Teaching Assistant, Vietnam

Elaine Sohng ’17, English Teaching Assistant, Benin

Critical Language Scholarship (CLS)

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) 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 mastering critical languages and building relationships between the people of the U.S. and other countries, CLS provides study opportunities (7-10 weeks of intensive language study abroad) to a diverse range of students from across the nation at every level of language learning. The CLS Program is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.


Kandace Fung ’19, Chinese, Dalian, China

Aaron Yang ’17, Chinese, Changchun, China

Lindsey Burton ’19, Arabic, Tangier, Morocco

Princeton in Africa

Founded in 1999, Princeton in Africa develops young leaders committed to Africa’s advancement by offering yearlong fellowship opportunities with a variety of organizations that work across the African continent. Since the organization’s launch in 1999, Princeton in Africa has placed nearly 500 fellows in 36 countries.

Princeton in Africa matches talented and passionate college students, including graduating seniors and young alumni from any accredited college or university in the U.S., with organization partners at work across Africa. Fellows have helped improve education and public health, source fresh water and alternative energy, increase family incomes, and much more.


Benjamin Fusek ’17, Imani Development, Malawi

Khadija Hassanali ’17, mSurvey*, Kenya

*(Company that uses a text message based platform to send out surveys used by large health research universities and corporations.)

Princeton in Asia

Founded in 1898, Princeton in Asia (PiA) has been building bridges between the U.S. and Asia for over a century. PiA’s original mission is as meaningful and urgent today as it was 118 years ago: the need to educate Americans about Asia and to help Asian communities better understand the U.S.

PiA sponsors more than 150 fellowships and internships in 21 countries. It is the oldest and largest organization of its kind, unique in its scope, size, century-long expertise and emphasis on service.


Joshua Rooney ’17, Teaching Placement, Kazakhstan

Boren Scholarship

The Boren Scholarship is a highly competitive scholarship (only 196 scholarships were awarded to students nationwide this year from hundreds of applicants), awarding up to $20,000 to undergraduates.

The scholarship grants allow U.S. undergraduate students to study abroad in areas of the world that are critical to U.S. national security, yet underrepresented by study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East.

Boren Scholars represent a variety of academic backgrounds, but all are interested in studying less commonly taught languages, including but not limited to Arabic, Chinese, Korean, Portuguese, Russian, and Swahili.

The scholarships are funded by the National Security Education Program (NSEP).


Roxane Sazegar ’19, Arabic, CET Jordan (fall, 2017)

Humanity in Action Fellowship 

Humanity in Action is an international educational organization. It is a non-profit and non-partisan organization that educates, inspires, and connects a global network of students, young professionals and established leaders committed to promoting human rights, diversity, and active citizenship—in their own communities and around the world.

In addition, Humanity in Action aims to instill the values of human dignity and moral responsibility for the protection of the rights of minorities in a new generation of social, cultural, and political leaders.


Anoush Baghdassarian ’17, Berlin

Davis Projects for Peace

Davis Projects for Peace is an initiative inspired by the late Kathryn W. Davis, an accomplished internationalist and philanthropist. Upon the occasion of her 100th birthday in February of 2007, Mrs. Davis, mother of Shelby M.C. Davis who funds the Davis UWC Scholars Program, chose to celebrate by committing $1 million for 100 Projects for Peace: “I want to use my 100th birthday to help young people launch some immediate initiatives—things that they can do during the summer of 2007—that will bring new thinking to the prospects of peace in the world.”  The Davis family is continuing Projects for Peace for the summer of 2017.

With grant awards of up to $10,000, the organization hopes to encourage student initiative, innovation, and entrepreneurship focusing on conflict prevention, resolution, or reconciliation. 


Anoush Baghdassarian ’17, Armenia

Rangel Summer Enrichment Program 

The Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Summer Enrichment Program is a six-week summer program designed to provide undergraduate students with a deeper appreciation of current issues and trends in international affairs, a greater understanding of career opportunities in international affairs, and the enhanced knowledge and skills to pursue such careers. The program usually selects 15 participants (known as “Rangel Scholars”) each year from universities throughout the U.S. Students live at Howard University, attend classes and participate in a variety of programs with foreign affairs professionals at Howard and at diverse locations around Washington, DC.


Tiana Steverson Pugh ’19

Mellon-Mays Undergraduate Fellowship 

The Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship (MMUF) program is the centerpiece of The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation’s initiatives to increase diversity in the faculty ranks of institutions of higher learning. The fundamental objective of MMUF is to address, over time, the problem of underrepresentation in the academy at the level of college and university faculties. Established in 1988, the program has grown to include 48 member schools and consortia, including three South African universities and a consortium of historically black colleges and universities. As of 2017, more than 5,000 students have been selected as fellows, more than 700 have earned PhDs, and more than 100 are now tenured faculty members.


Quincy Brown ’19