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National Scholarship Competitions

Award Recipients from Messiah College



Scholarship Award and Bio

Jeffrey Stiles

Boren scholarship -2014

Jeffrey Stiles ('16), a politics and Chinese studies major, will use his Boren Scholarship to study Mandarin at Shanghai International Studies University for the 2014-2015 school year. Born in Lima, Peru, Stiles is fluent in Spanish and spent the spring semester of his sophomore year studying Spanish politics, history, and law at the University of Barcelona. At Messiah, he is active in the Chinese Club, where he serves as co-president, the Collaboratory (Economic Empowerment Group), and the student ambassador program.


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Malcolm McDermond

Fulbright Scholar -2013

Malcolm McDermond, senior sociology and anthropology and Biblical and religious studies major has been selected for a Fulbright U.S. Student award for 2013-2014. He will tenure his award in Malaysia where he will hold an English Teaching Assistantship (ETA). ETAs place Fulbrighters in a classroom abroad to provide assistance to teachers of English to non-native English-speakers.



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Xu Ren

Carnegie Fellow -2012

A native of Henan Province, China, Xu Ren (’12, Politics) immigrated to the US in 1998. In 2010-11, Xu returned to China to study at the Dongbei University of Finance and Economics in Dalian, where he developed the preliminary idea for his senior thesis on the ability of social media to advance liberal democratic values and behaviors in China.  From 2012-13, Xu will be working in Washington DC as a research fellow in the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace’s Asia Program, focusing on US-China relations.



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Bianca Basch

Boren Scholar – 2010

An immigrant from South Africa and fluent in four languages, Bianca Basch ('12, Biology) nurtured her passion for international development by using her Boren award to live, study and intern in Thailand in 2010-11. The experience inspired her senior honors project on vermicomposting. Her thesis aims to determine if alternative waste management strategies, namely vermicomposting, can be used to divert waste naturally rather than paying for its removal. Basch hopes to return to Thailand to continue working in sustainable agriculture


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Jennica Sehorn

Fulbright Scholar – 2007

A native of Portland, Oregon, Jennica Sehorn ('07, Foreign Languages), pictured on the far right, won a Fulbright Scholarship to Turkey for 2007-08.  She spent the year teaching English conversation classes at Bilkent University in Ankara. In May 2011 Jennica completed her Master's of Arts degree at Georgetown in Latin American Studies with a concentration in Refugee and Humanitarian Emergencies. Currently she is an Executive Assistant at the Kakenya Center for Excellence in Washington DC.  Through promoting the education of young Kenyan women, the Center works to end female genital mutilation and early forced marriage in Maasai communities.


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Jamie Davies

Truman Scholar – 2004

After graduating from Messiah ('05, Politics), Jamie joined the Teach For America program in Camden, New Jersey, where she taught for two years in one of the lowest income neighborhoods in the country. While teaching, she became aware of the extent to which public policy impacts public schools, teachers, and students. She decided to use her Truman award to enroll in the Master's of Public Administration program at Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, where she specialized in domestic and urban policy, and from which she graduated with distinction in 2009.  Subsequently, Jamie moved back to her home state of Ohio and began working with the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a think tank dedicated to advancing educational excellence. In early 2012, she joined the Ohio Council of Community Schools as a Communications Strategist.


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Sara Kasper

Carnegie Fellow – 2002

From 2002-03, Sara Kasper (02, Politics) worked as a research fellow in the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace's China Program. In 2006, Sara graduated with a J.D., cum laude, from Harvard Law School. Presently she is a senior associate at WilmerHale in Washington DC, part of the firm's Litigation/Controversy and Regulatory and Government Affairs Departments and a member of the Investigations and Criminal Litigation and Defense, National Security and Government Contracts Practice Groups. She rejoined WilmerHale in 2012 after serving as Associate General Counsel and Interim General Counsel at ASRC Energy Services (AES), an oil & gas services company in Alaska.


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Carmen McCain

Fulbright Scholar – 2001

Carmen McCain, ('99, English) was Fulbright Fellow to Nigeria in 2001-2002. Currently she is a PhD Candidate in the Department of African Languages and Literature at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Her thesis focusses on the Nigerian film industry, with an emphasis on political discourse in Hausa-language film, literature, and music. In 2008 Carmen returned to Nigeria to carry out full-time doctoral research, work that has been funded by the Ebrahim Hussein Fellowship for the Study of African Literature and by a Fulbright-Hays grant. Since October 2010, she has also been a columnist with the Nigerian national paper, Weekly Trust.


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Rebecca Gambler

Fulbright Scholar – 1999

Rebecca Gambler is an Acting Director in the U.S. Government Accountability Office’s (GAO) Homeland Security and Justice Team, where she leads GAO’s work on border security and immigration issues.  Ms. Gambler joined GAO in 2002 and has worked on a wide range of issues related to homeland security and justice, including border security, immigration, and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) management and transformation. In particular, Ms. Gambler has led high-profile, comprehensive reviews of DHS’s progress in implementing its mission and management functions to coincide with the department’s 4-year anniversary and the 10-year anniversary of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. Prior to joining GAO, Ms. Gambler worked at the National Endowment for Democracy’s International Forum for Democratic Studies. Ms. Gambler has an M.A. in national security and strategic studies from the United States Naval War College, an M.A. in international relations from Syracuse University, and an M.A. in political science from the University of Toronto.  She was a Fulbright Fellow to Canada from 1999-2000.  Ms. Gambler has a B.A. in political science from Messiah College.


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Joy Wang

Rhodes Scholar – 1997

Joy Yu-Ho Wang ('98, English and Politics) received her D.Phil. in post-colonial studies from Oxford University in 2005. After a brief period teaching literature at the City University of New York, Joy decided to change vocational direction. In 2010 she graduated with a J.D. from Harvard Law School.  Presently she is a public defender with the Legal Aid Society in New York City.


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