Elisabeth de Gramont Wins David L. Boren Scholarship
Elisabeth de Gramont, a sophomore diplomacy and world affairs major at Occidental College, has been awarded a David L. Boren Scholarship to study Chinese language and culture at Beijing University.
De Gramont, a graduate of Walnut Hill School in Natick, Mass., will spend spring semester 2005 in China, where she will enroll in a program administered by Pitzer College. De Gramont joins Occidental sophomore Stephan van der Mersch of Boulder, Colo., (who will also study in China) as one of 181 Boren scholars chosen this year from a national pool of 860 applicants. Occidental students have received nine Boren Scholarships since 2000. The award will allot de Gramont $4,000 to pursue her studies.
De Gramont, who plans to work for the Peace Corps or State Department, said she will take a course in media studies while in China. She also will conduct interviews to gauge the effect of international media on today’s generation of Chinese college students.
“I find this topic interesting because China’s university students have a long tradition of launching democracy movements that have instigated reform in Chinese politics and culture,” de Gramont said. “I want to find out how the growing influence of the west has been transported to China through the media and what its effect will be on future generations of students interested in instituting greater democracy in their country.”
First awarded in 1994, the David L. Boren Scholarship is named after the former Oklahoma senator whose David L. Boren Act of 1991 established the NSEP. The legislation created a trust fund to provide for national investment in higher education in international studies and to build a base of expertise that would be available to the government.
Recipients of NSEP scholarships and fellowships incur an obligation to work either in higher education or for an office or agency of the federal government involved in national security affairs.