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Two Mount St. Mary’s Seniors Awarded Fulbright Scholarships

Donna Klinger

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The Mount St. Mary’s University Office of Competitive Fellowships announced that seniors Anne Frederick and Jenna Lewaren have been offered highly competitive Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarships to study, pursue research and teach in Italy and Germany, respectively.

 “The Office of Competitive Fellowships is excited that Anne and Jenna have earned these prestigious and exciting opportunities to further their education, study, conduct research and immerse themselves in a new culture,” said Jamie Gianoutsos, Ph.D., associate professor of history and director of the Office of Competitive Fellowships. “Our faculty have greatly enjoyed getting to know these incredible students within and beyond the classroom and through the Fulbright process.”

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is designed to provide research, study and teaching opportunities through grants in over 160 countries to recent undergraduates and graduate students. The Research/Study Grant allows recent college graduates and young professionals to earn a graduate degree or develop and execute a unique research project for a specific country. The English Teaching Assistant programs enable award winners to join local English teachers in their respective countries to provide assistance through teaching the English language as well as communicating and representing American culture.

annefrederick_headshot-uncropped.jpgThrough the first-ever Fulbright-LUISS award, which is granted to only one individual, Anne Frederick of Baltimore County, Maryland will earn a Master’s in international relations with a major in security at LUISS (Libera Università Internazionale degli Studi Sociali Guido Carli) in Rome. During the two-year span of her grant, she will pursue research on the connections between her interests of comparative electoral systems and religious diplomacy. “These two interests are distinct, but a LUISS Master’s degree in international relations will afford me a unique opportunity to study their interconnectedness,” said Frederick, who plans to pursue a career in democracy development and peacebuilding in the international affairs community.

A double major in philosophy, politics and economics (PPE) and Italian, with a minor in theology, as well as an Honors student, Frederick participated in the 2021 Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Summer Enrichment Program through the U.S. Department of State. She served as an editorial intern for the Journal of Moral Theology, and has interned with the International Center for Religion and Diplomacy in Washington DC. She also is a Mount Ambassador director in the university's admissions office.

Frederick’s first internship came at the early age of 16 when she worked as a congressional intern in the U.S. House of Representatives. Her final internship will be this summer when she serves as a political and economic intern to the U.S. Embassy to the Holy See in Rome before starting at LUISS in the fall.

Frederick is grateful to Associate Professor of Theology Barrett Turner, Ph.D.; Assistant Professor of Political Science William Christiansen, Ph.D.; and Associate Professor Cañadas for writing recommendation letters, and to Professor and Chair of the Department of World Languages and Cultures Marco Roman, Ph.D., for serving as her Italian language evaluator.

jennalewaren-330-in-text.jpgJenna Lewaren’s long-held affection for Germany and the German language was fueled by an exchange program in high school. In Germany, the elementary education and German major will work closely with a German teacher of English.

“I knew I wanted to teach in Germany specifically after I participated in an exchange program through my high school. By that time, I had been studying German since kindergarten!” Lewaren explained.

In addition to balancing two majors, and two education internships during a pandemic, Lewaren, of Green Bay, Wisconsin, is a member of the women’s NCAA Division I Rugby Team. She plans to engage with the local German community through club rugby as a player or coach.

In Lewraen’s second education internship, she took over the classroom and became the teacher, preparing her well for her Fulbright experience. “It was here that I gained all of my confidence and tools to be the current teacher that I am,” she explained, “It was also here that I was able to confirm that I chose the right career path for me. I was able to come into the classroom every day and do what I loved. It felt super rewarding."

Lewaren is grateful for the recommendation letters from Professor of World Languages and Cultures Susann Samples, Ph.D.; Director of Teacher Education Stacey Brown-Hobbs, Ph.D.; and Assistant Women’s Rugby Team Coach Lance Connelly.

The Competitive Fellowships Committee, comprised of faculty members Director Jamie Gianoutsos, Ph.D., Associate Director Christine Blackshaw, Ph.D., Josey Chacko, Ph.D., Angy Kallarackal, Ph.D., Michelle Ohanian, Ph.D., and Garth Patterson, Ph.D., oversaw these applications and conducted the Fulbright on-campus interviews. The Career Center also provided interview support.

Donna Klinger