Three VCU Students Win Boren Scholarships for Study Abroad Next Year

News courtesy of Jeff Wing, National Scholarship Office,
Photos courtesy of VCU News Center:

Senior Margaret Cotter, Sophomore Bertrand (Yohannes) Mpigabahizi, and Junior Rachel Sine have been awarded Boren Scholarships to study abroad next year.

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With their selection, VCU students have now won twelve Boren Awards for International Study in the past five years. Senior Ben Cohen (Mass Comm) is studying Mandarin in Taiwan and junior Elisabeth Moore (English) is just about to complete a year of study of Mandarin in Beijing.  All five of these students are members of The Honors College.

Margaret Cotter is from Midlothian and was about to graduate summa cum laude with University Honorswith a double major in International Studies and Political Science and a minor in Italian.  She will now postpone her graduation until after she completes a year studying Turkish language and culture in Istanbul as a Boren Scholar.

Yohannes Mpigabahizi has just completed his first year at VCU.  From Bristow, Virginia, he is majoring in International Studies and Economics and planning to get a minor in Arabic.  He will spend the next year studying Arabic and Egyptian politics, history and culture in Cairo.

Rachel Sine is a sophomore from Roanoke majoring in International Studies with concentrations in International Relations and Southeast Asia Studies and a minor in Religious Studies.  She will spend the next year continuing her Hindi studies in India, while also studying Indian culture, history and politics.  Rachel was also selected for a Critical Language Scholarship earlier this spring and will undertake intensive Hindi language studies in India this summer before she begins her Boren studies in the fall.

In this year’s competition, approximately 140 Boren Scholarships were awarded from a field of more than 900 applicants.  While nationally only about one in six Boren applicants will be selected, three of VCU’s seven candidates were selected, a fact which speaks well of the quality of applicants, the education they are receiving as undergraduates at VCU, and the support that they receive from faculty mentors and recommenders as well as the review panels.  Over the past five years, just over a third of VCU’s Boren candidates have been successful.

VCU National Scholarship Office

Boren Awards for International Study

VCU News Center Article: “Three VCU Students Receive Boren Scholarships”