CSU, Chico News

CSU, Chico Student Named for Prestigious David L. Boren Scholarship

Date: 05-05-2016

Ashley Gebb
Public Affairs and Publications

California State University, Chico student William Walker has won a scholarship that will enable him to study for a year in Taiwan, as he pursues a global education and future career with the federal government. The political science major was named earlier this month as a recipient of the David L. Boren Scholarship, which aims to add important international and language components to students’ educations by facilitating their overseas studies in world regions critical to U.S. interests. Walker will spend the 2016-17 academic year studying international relations with a minor in economics at National Taiwan University.

Drawn to the cultural and physical environment of Taipei and its political history, Walker selected National Taiwan University for its esteemed reputation in law and economics. He will spend the year studying international finance, public policy and international law, as well as building on the Chinese language skills he developed in courses at CSU, Chico.

“If I have a political understanding of global politics and foreign policy, that’s key for diplomacy,” he said. “If I want to be a diplomat and do federal service, a big part of that is how do we have diplomacy between China and Taiwan.”

Jennifer Gruber, coordinator of the Study Abroad and International Exchange Office at CSU, Chico, said the Boren scholarships and fellowships are extremely competitive, with only a small percentage of applicants awarded each year.

“This prestigious scholarship opportunity will allow William to fully immerse himself in Taiwanese culture and explore the region thoroughly,” she said. “Due to his strong academic performance and clear focus on East Asia, William is a well-deserving recipient of the award and the Study Abroad Office is very excited for his future adventures.”

He is the first undergraduate recipient at CSU, Chico since 2002-03, when Asian studies and economics major Hugo Cervantes studied in Japan for a year as a Boren scholar. In 2011-12, graduate student and political science major Jose Valdovinos spent a year in Egypt as a Boren fellow.

The Institute of International Education awarded 165 David L. Boren Scholarships this year to undergraduate students and 105 David L. Boren Fellowships to graduate students. Boren scholars and fellows will live in 41 countries throughout Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America and the Middle East.

The National Security Education Program’s Boren Awards program provides U.S. undergraduate and graduate students with resources and encouragement to acquire language skills and experience in countries critical to the future security and national stability. In exchange for funding, Boren Award recipients agree to work in the federal government for a period of at least one year.

Since 1994, more than 5,500 students nationwide have received Boren Awards. Undergraduate and graduate students interested in applying for the Boren Awards should contact boren@iie.org or visit www.borenawards.org.