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Fulbright Info Sessions 3/28 and 3/30

By Kim Germain on March 22, 2016

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants that enable students and alumni who are U.S. citizens to spend an academic year abroad for independent research/study or to teach English and U.S. culture. There are also some specialized Fulbright opportunities, e.g. the Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship. Fulbright grants are available to over 150 countries.

The application cycle for the 2017-2018 award year begins this month, which means that current juniors who wish to do a Fulbright in the academic year after they graduate should start their applications this spring. Current seniors and alumni are also welcome and eligible to apply. Colgate provides extensive advisement to students and alumni as they apply for a Fulbright.

Want to learn more? Come to one of our Fulbright info sessions: Monday, March 28 at 1:30pm or Wednesday, March 30 at 4:30pm in 101 McGregory. There will be cookies.


Alumni profile: Marshall finalist Chris Looney

By Kim Germain on January 13, 2016

Colgate alumnus Christopher Looney ’13 was a Finalist this fall for the highly competitive and prestigious Marshall Scholarship. It is a rare honor to reach the Finalist stage, and the Colgate community is very proud of his accomplishments – both those that got him to this point and those yet to come. After the process was over, Chris spoke with me about this experience; the following profile comes from those conversations.

Path to the Marshall

Christopher Looney '13

Chris Looney ’13

After he graduated in 2013, Chris took a research internship with the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington, DC, where he worked on their Transnational Threats Project, with a focus on extremist groups in the Middle East. This opened the door to a research analyst position in Turkey, where Chris reported as a journalist along the border with Syria, where he interviewed combatants and refugees as well as monitoring humanitarian organizations there. He subsequently joined the Peace Corps and has been in Burkina Faso since June 2014, where he leads educational initiatives.

Fellowship Application Process
Building on the academic interests he pursued at Colgate as a double major in International Relations and History, Chris applied for the Marshall, which would fund two years of graduate study in Britain. Able to select from nearly any UK university and graduate program, he selected two one-year programs: the MSc in Conflict Studies at the London School of Economics and the MA in Humanitarianism and Conflict Response at the University of Manchester. “The Marshall first attracted me because of the wide breadth of academic programs available in the UK and the ability to merge two master’s programs to focus specifically on a narrow academic interest. I wanted to look at refugee issues, but not in the classical sense that views the topic on humanitarian terms. Instead, I was interested in integrating refugee studies with post-conflict studies and analyzing how refugee policies undertaken during a war impact the reconstruction process,” said Chris.

While in Burkina Faso, Chris worked remotely with me, the Assistant Dean for Fellowship Advising in the Office of National Fellowships and Scholarships, to secure Colgate’s nomination for the Marshall. “The process was long, time-consuming, but ultimately very rewarding,” said Chris. “You are forced to think very deeply not just about graduate school, but the trajectory of your career in the long term. In that sense, it was a bit like a 6-month journey of self-reflection.” Candidates for the Marshall and other similar awards work closely with me and Colgate’s UK/Ireland Fellowships Committee over a period of many months to tell the story of their academic and career interests, conduct research about academic programs in the UK, and build their application dossiers.

Nationwide, 32 Marshall Scholars were selected out of 916 candidates endorsed by their universities. Only 17% of endorsed candidates received finalist interviews nationally in this year’s competition. It was even tougher in the New York region, where only 20 of 166 endorsed candidates (12%) were granted finalist interviews, so it is a very great honor for Chris to have reached that level. The last time Colgate had a student reach this level in the Marshall competition was Fall 2007.

The Marshall Commission flew Chris back from Burkina Faso to interview in New York City on November 10; he was able to get a full week off, which helped him get acclimated to our time zone.  Chris came to campus in the days prior to November 10 for two days of intensive interview preparation with our UK/Ireland Committee and other faculty members.

Chris said: “The interview was a great experience, and I received an incredible amount of support from the University and faculty through mock interviews, discussions, and their critiques. During the actual interview in New York, I was asked about everything from the effect of the influx of refugees on German national identity to my favorite Bruce Springsteen song. The panel was made up 5 incredibly intelligent and accomplished professionals, and was more conversational than anything. I actually had fun, which I definitely did not expect going in. Despite not receiving the scholarship, the application process was very enriching and helped me clarify where I want my career to take me.”

Future Plans
Even if it’s not through the Marshall, Chris plans to pursue a similar path in conflict studies and refugee issues in graduate school, and he is currently looking into a number of programs in addition to the ones he found through the Marshall process, including the option of law school with a focus on legal rights of refugees. He also hopes to return to Turkey to get back in touch with what’s been happening on the ground vis-à-vis the Syrian conflict. Chris’s future work should have a positive impact on the lives of people in conflict and post-conflict zones.

About the Marshall Scholarship
Founded in 1953 by an Act of Parliament, Marshall Scholarships are mainly funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and commemorate the humane ideals of the Marshall Plan. They express the continuing gratitude of the British people to their American counterparts. Marshall Scholarships finance young Americans of high ability to study for a degree in the United Kingdom. Up to forty Scholars are selected each year to study at the graduate level at a UK institution in any field of study. As future leaders, with a lasting understanding of British society, Marshall Scholars strengthen the enduring relationship between the British and American peoples, their governments and their institutions. Marshall Scholars are talented, independent and wide-ranging, and their time as Scholars enhances their intellectual and personal growth. Their direct engagement with Britain through its best academic programs contributes to their ultimate personal success.

Fall 2015 fellowship deadlines

By Kim Germain on September 3, 2015

Here is a handy guide to Colgate’s fall semester deadlines for some significant external fellowship opportunities, with eligible class years noted in brackets. I encourage you to contact ONFS about any and all of these that interest you — the earlier the better!

September 15: Fulbright*, Rhodes*, Marshall*, Churchill*, Mitchell**, Gates Cambridge [all of these open to seniors, alumni]
September 15: Glamour’s Top 10 College Women [juniors, seniors]
October 1: Schwarzman Scholars** [seniors, alumni]
October 2: Watson* [seniors]
November 1: Soros Fellowship for New Americans [seniors, alumni], Public Policy and International Affairs (PPIA) [juniors]
Early November: NSF Graduate Research Fellowship (deadlines vary by academic discipline) [seniors, alumni]
November 12: St. Andrew’s* [seniors]
November 17: Carnegie Junior Fellows* [seniors, alumni]
November 23: Critical Language Scholarship [any class year]
December 1: Goldwater* [sophomores, juniors], Truman* [juniors], NIH-Oxford-Cambridge [seniors, alumni]
December 11: Boren Scholarship* [any class year]

*Applicants must go through Colgate’s required campus review and application/nomination process, all of which is overseen by ONFS.  The deadlines noted for opportunities in italics, therefore, are internal campus deadlines.

**Only current students must secure a campus nomination and must therefore submit complete materials by the campus deadline noted here.  Alumni apply directly and do not receive a university nomination.

See the Fellowship Listing page on the ONFS website for further information about these awards, including eligibility criteria and links to the foundation websites.

Seniors: Apply for the Watson Fellowship!

By Kim Germain on August 20, 2015

The Watson Fellowship provides $30,000 to fund a self-driven year of global exploration and travel outside of the US after graduation. Projects can be about nearly anything, academic or personal, that intrigues and motivates you enough to spend a whole year pursuing that idea or issue around the globe.

The campus deadline is October 2 — coming up fast. All interested seniors are highly encouraged to contact ONFS for valuable advisement and application feedback prior to the campus deadline.

Download application materials:  Click Watson campus application form 2015 for this year’s campus application form and instructions, and click Watson Recommendation Form for the questionnaire that must be completed by your recommenders and submitted by them to ONFS.

Additional details: Candidates must:

  • Be in their senior year at the time of application
  • Receive a bachelor’s degree prior to Aug. 1 of that year
  • Create a project for a year of independent, purposeful exploration and travel
  • Be nominated by Colgate. Nomination decisions will be made by our Watson Committee after review of application materials and campus interviews, which will take place soon after the campus deadline above.

Watson website


Moving on up: ONFS office move

By Kim Germain on August 18, 2015

ONFS is moving upstairs. As of Weds., August 19, ONFS will move from the basement level of McGregory, where it’s been since 2013, to the suite in 105 McGregory that houses the associate deans of the faculty.

Kelly Snyder, in 105 McGregory, will provide administrative support for ONFS.  Students and alumni who wish to make appointments with me can contact Kelly directly at ksnyder@colgate.edu, or in person in 105.

We look forward to welcoming you to our new space as soon as the dust settles!

NEW Schwarzman Scholars Program visits Colgate on 4/15

By Kim Germain on April 7, 2015

Schwarzman Scholars will be visiting Colgate University on April 15, 2015 at 4:15pm in Coop 134. Students, faculty, and staff who are interested in learning about this wonderful new opportunity are highly encouraged to attend.

Schwarzman Scholars, inspired by the Rhodes Scholarship, is a brand new program designed to help future leaders meet the challenges of the 21st century and beyond by preparing them to better understand China’s culture, economy, governance, and motivations. Up to 200 Scholars chosen annually from around the world for this highly selective, fully-funded program will have an unrivaled opportunity to live in Beijing for a year of study and cultural immersion, attending lectures, traveling, and developing firsthand exposure to China and its people. Scholars will study for a one-year Master’s degree in public policy, international studies, or economics and business at Tsinghua University. They aim to build a diverse cohort and welcome applicants from any undergraduate major. No prior study of China or Chinese language is required.

Schwarzman Scholars is looking for applicants with the following characteristics:

  • Leadership potential
  • Strong intellectual capacity
  • Personal integrity and strong character
  • Are at least 18 but not yet 28 years of age as of June 30 of matriculation year
  • Have a bachelor’s degree in hand before July of matriculation year

The new application opens this month, and the first cohort will be admitted in the fall of 2015 for study in Beijing during 2016-2017. The application deadline is October 1. For more information, visit the Schwarzman website.

Watson Fellowship info sessions 4/6 and 4/19

By Kim Germain on April 1, 2015

The Watson Fellowship provides $28,000 to fund a self-driven year of global exploration and travel outside of the US after graduation. Projects can be about nearly anything meaningful, academic or personal, that intrigues and motivates you enough to spend a whole year pursuing that idea or issue around the globe.

ONFS is hosting two info sessions devoted to the Watson Fellowship in April; all interested students are invited to attend either or both.

  1. Monday, April 6 at 4:15pm in 201 McGregory — with special guest Sohee Ryuk ’15, who was recently named a 2015 Watson Fellow!  Cookies from Jarcho.
  2. Sunday, April 19 at 3pm in the Batza Conference Room, 560 Case-Geyer — with special guest Bekah Ward ’13, who will talk about her adventures and travels in 2013-14 on her Watson Fellowship project, Unraveling bias and conviction: Roma cultural communication and activism.  Coffee and pastries from Serendipity for your  Sunday study break.

Members of the Class of 2016 are especially encouraged to attend one or both Watson info sessions, as you would need to apply in this upcoming application cycle.  First-years and sophomores are also very welcome, as it’s never too early to start thinking about what you’d do on your year of global exploration!

Fulbright info session on March 25

By Kim Germain on March 12, 2015

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides grants that enable students who are U.S. citizens to spend an academic year abroad for independent research/study or to teach English.  Fulbright also offers two partnership grants: the Fulbright-National Geographic Digital Storytelling Fellowship and the Fulbright-mtvU Grant.  Fulbright grants are available to over 140 countries.

The application cycle for the 2016-2017 award year begins this month, which means that current juniors who wish to do a Fulbright immediately following graduation should start soon.  Current seniors and alumni are also welcome and eligible to apply.

Want to learn more?  Come to our Fulbright info session on Wednesday, March 25, at 4:15pm in 320 Lawrence.  There will be cookies.

Colgate was named a Fulbright Top Producing Institution for 2014-2015 — come find out how you can be a part of our winning tradition.


Overseas awards for 2016-2017, preliminary deadlines in June

By Kim Germain on March 10, 2015

Juniors and seniors and alumni who are interested in scholarships that fund graduate study in the UK or Ireland and/or in Fulbright grants for study/research or teaching English abroad in 2016-2017 — the time to begin your applications is now.

Colgate has preliminary deadlines in June for submission of initial materials, with the understanding that meeting the early deadline guarantees full advising through the summer, so that your application can be in excellent shape by the final deadlines in mid-September.

All interested candidates are strongly encouraged to arrange a meeting with Dean Germain before the end of this semester to discuss your interests and plans; this will help you, among other things, decide which opportunities may be best suited for you.

Monday, June 1:  Those interested in graduate study in the UK or Ireland (e.g. via the Marshall, Rhodes, Churchill, and/or Mitchell Scholarships) should submit a statement of interest (not more than 1000 words) discussing yourself, your motivations, and your graduate plans.  Further, you should solicit recommendation letters and have at least 4 confirmed recommenders on board by this time; ideally, your recommenders will submit draft letters by June 1 as well.

Monday, June 15:  Those interested in a Fulbright grant for study/research or teaching English abroad should submit initial drafts of the statement of grant purpose and the personal statement (as per Fulbright’s formatting rules).

All materials should be submitted via email to onfs@colgate.edu.  Also contact ONFS via email or phone (x6224) to make an appointment with Dean Germain.

Watson deadline extended until Oct. 6!

By Kim Germain on September 30, 2014

Prospective Watson applicants will have a few extra days to get application materials in order, as we have extended the deadline until 4:00pm on Monday, October 6.

Download application materials: Click Watson campus application form 2014 for the application form and instructions, and click WatsonRecForm for the questionnaire that must be completed by your recommenders and submitted by them to ONFS.