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Joel Zullinger, new Chairperson of the Shippensburg University Foundation Board of Directors, said in a recent interview, “Providing scholarships for students is one of the most important roles the SU Foundation fulfills for the University. They make a world of difference for students, offering all kinds of opportunities that would not be there otherwise.”
In 2007-2008, $1,055,054 was provided for scholarships and low interest loans. Over 400 awards were given to academically talented and deserving students and student athletes.
Scholarships – creating opportunities, changing lives
Jennifer Bly, who graduated last May with an English major and a minor in Art, is currently studying for her M.A. in Rhetoric and Political Culture in the Department of Communication at the University of Maryland. While at Ship, her interest in Latin American culture and globalization encouraged her to apply for a Fulbright Grant for an English teaching assistantship in Argentina. By graduation she knew that her application had been recommended by the National Screening Committee of the Institute of International Education. Last month Jenn heard that she had been offered admission to the Fulbright U.S. Student Program to study and teach English in Montevideo, Uruguay, for 10 months starting in March. She is believed to be the first Shippensburg student ever to receive a Fulbright Grant in the 62 year history of the exchange program. While there, Jenn will also conduct independent research, university coursework, and a service project.
The Fulbright program, administered by the U.S. State Department to “increase mutual understanding between the peoples of the United States and other countries through the exchange of persons, knowledge, and skills,” distributes only 1,500 student scholarships each year. “I can’t tell you how excited I am about this opportunity,” said Jenn. “I’m looking forward to learning more about Uruguayan culture and being able to share American culture with the students there.”
During her years at Ship, Jenn undertook many service projects for the Honors Program including “Ship It: Textbooks Go Global” that sent thousands of used textbooks to Maseno University in Kenya. She also had an ExxonMobile ‘Community Summer Jobs Program’ internship in Dallas, TX, where she translated materials from English into Spanish. At the conclusion of her joint undergraduate student/faculty research project, “Applying Service Learning Concepts in the Creation of Non-Profit Organization” Jenn had the opportunity to present her findings at the 2005 conference for International Partnership for Service-Learning and leadership in Rapid City, SD.
As an undergraduate student, Jenn received the Shirley Fry Fox Scholarship and the H & H Chevrolet Scholarship. In her senior year Jenn wrote to her benefactors, “Your support means everything. Without your assistance, I would not have had the opportunity for the meaningful education I’ve received or the chance to pursue my dreams like I have been these past four years. I am so grateful - thank you.”
Through her scholarship support, hard work and record of leadership and service, Jenn is about to realize another dream, one which will provide lasting opportunities for the students at the Uruguayan college where she’ll be teaching.