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PIIRS Undergraduate Fellows

PIIRS administers a program aimed at facilitating summer international research for the senior thesis. The fellowships are available to students working in any discipline who are about to begin the second semester of their junior year on campus and are interested in conducting summer research abroad for their senior thesis.

Up to 10 juniors will be selected through a competitive application process. Those accepted into the program will work with a PIIRS-appointed academic adviser during the spring semester of their junior year to develop a proposal for summer senior thesis research abroad (including a budget). These students are also required to attend meetings on the logistics of engaging in international research.

Upon approval of the research proposal by the PIIRS director, a PIIRS Undergraduate Fellow will be eligible for $3,000–$6000 in funding to meet the entirety of their travel and other expenses related to summer research abroad. The PIIRS Undergraduate Fellows are obligated, in the spring of their senior year, to give a short presentation on their field-work experiences to the incoming junior cohort.

The application deadline is December 12, 2014.

To apply, students must submit an application that includes a short statement outlining their senior thesis research interests; a statement of relevant course work, international experiences, or skills for carrying out research (for instance, foreign language skills); a copy of the most recent transcript; and one letter of recommendation from a professor or instructor familiar with the student’s work. Please do not send additional writing samples. All materials should be sent via email to Carole Frantzen.

For more information see PIIRS undergraduate funding on the PIIRS website or contact Carole Frantzen.

Fellowship Adviser


Michael Laffan  is a professor in the Department of History. He studies the history of Southeast Asia, with a current focus on Islam, nationalism, Dutch colonialism, and orientalism. Laffan’s most recent book, The Makings of Indonesian Islam: Orientalism and the Narration of a Sufi Past (2011), looks at the results of an engagement between Islamic reformers with intellectual links to Cairo and influential colonial scholars. His work in progress is an exploration of Indian Ocean mobilities and religious exchange in the 18th century. Ph.D. University of Sydney.

Class of 2015

Katie Horvath
Department of Anthropology
Program in Spanish
Program in Creative Writing
 
Michael Kochis
Department of Molecular Biology
Program in Global Health and Health Policy
 
Kassandra Leiva
Department of Architecture
Program in French Language and Culture
 
Arjun Naidu
Department of History
 
Andres Parrado
Department of East Asian studies
Program in French Language and Culture
 
Luke Politi
Department of French and Italian
Program in Medieval Studies
 
Rachel Reiss
Department of Molecular Biology
Program in Global Health and Health Policy
 
Jake Robertson
Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures
Program in Theater
 
Rafael Saiz Garcia
Woodrow Wilson School
Program in Latin American Studies
Program in Spanish Language and Culture
Program in Portuguese Language and Culture
 
Misha Semenov
Department of Architecture
Program in Urban Studies
Program in Translation and Intercultural Communication
 
Rachel Skokowski
Department of French and Italian
Program in Humanistic Studies

PIIRS Undergraduate Fellows, Class of 2015

Class of 2014

David Abugaber
Independent concentrator in linguistics
Program in Latin American Studies 

Katherine Dubbs
Department of Art and Archaeology
Program for Urban Studies
 
Patience Haggin
Department of Comparative Literature
Program in Translation and Intercultural Communication
Program in Contemporary European Politics and Society
Program in Linguistics
Program in Humanistic Studies
Program in European Cultures
 
Sravanthi Kadali
Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
Program in Applications of Computing
Program in Contemporary European Politics and Society
Program in Planets and Life
 
Dixon Li
Department of English
Program in African American Studies
Program in American Studies
Program in Creative Writing
 
Carmina Mancenon
Department of Operations Research and Financial Engineering
Program in Environmental Studies
Program in Information Technology and Society
Program in Engineering and Management Systems
 
Nadirah Mansour
Department of Near Eastern Studies
Program of Arabic Language and Culture
 
Elizabeth Martin
Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
Program in South Asian Studies
 
Gaya Morris
Department of Anthropology
Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
 
Sofia Orlando
Department of Psychology
Program in Chinese Language and Culture
 
Kishan Shah
Department of Economics
Program in South Asian Studies
Program in Political  Economy
 
Charissa Shen
Department of Anthropology
Program in Global Health and Health Policy
 
Stephanie Teeple
Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs
Program in Global Health and Health Policy
Program in Near Eastern Studies
 
Julia Trehu
Department of History
Program in French Language and  Culture
Program in Contemporary European Politics and Society
 
Cameron White
Department of East Asian Studies
Program in Creative Writing

Class of 2013

Ewon Baik
Department of Politics
Program in East Asian Studies
Global Seminar 2011, Italy/Poland

Osasumwen Benjamin
Department of Comparative Literature
Programs in Spanish Language and Culture and African American Studies

Molly Brean
Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures
Programs in Russian and Eurasian Studies and  European Cultural Studies

Brandon Davis
Department of Anthropology
Programs in Near Eastern Studies and Latin American Studies

Nava Friedman
Department of Religion
Programs in African Studies and Judaic Studies

Kristen Kim
Department of Psychology
Program in East Asian Studies
Global Seminar 2010, South Korea

Tessa Maurer
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Andrew Sartorius
Woodrow Wilson School
Programs in Russian and Eurasian Studies and Contemporary European Politics and Society

Eleanor Taranto
Department of History
Programs in History of Science and Information Technology and Society

Daniel Velasco
Department of East Asian Studies


PIIRS Undergraduate Fellows, Class of 2013: Front (l-r), Kristen Kim, Brandon Davis, Molly Brean, Tessa Maurer, Nava Friedman. Rear (l-r): Professor Michael Laffan, Professor David Leheny, Nora Taranto, Andrew Sartorius, Osasumwen Benjamin, Daniel Velasco, Ewon Baik.