Garner and Stallsmith are the primary Elon college students to obtain the USAID Donald M. Payne Worldwide Improvement Graduate Fellowship and can be a part of the nationally-selective cohort of simply 30 fellows.
Elon alumnae Taylor Garner ‘20 and Catherine Stallsmith ‘22 have been named recipients of The USAID Donald M. Payne Worldwide Improvement Graduate Fellowship Program. They’re the primary Elon college students to be awarded this prestigious fellowship, which acquired over 500 purposes this yr for under 30 spots.
The Payne Fellowship Program seeks to draw excellent people inquisitive about pursuing careers within the Overseas Service of the U.S. Company for Worldwide Improvement (USAID). The fellowship consists of funding for a two-year grasp’s program in a discipline associated to worldwide affairs, two paid summer season internship placements (one in Washington, D.C. and one overseas), and 5 years of contractual employment with the USAID as a Overseas Service Officer upon completion of this system.
“I’ve all the time wished to pursue a profession in worldwide growth and I’ve all the time dreamed of working as a Overseas Service Officer for the USA,” Garner mentioned. “This fellowship is a wedding of each of those goals. I’m significantly excited to proceed residing and dealing overseas and assembly new folks and furthering my understanding of various cultures.”
At Elon, Garner majored in worldwide and world research, with minors in historical past and economics. Her early experiences with residing overseas, in addition to her undergraduate analysis challenge targeted on ladies’s intergenerational reminiscences of political violence in Argentina and Palestine, ready her to reach a post-graduate function with UN-Habitat in Ecuador, the place she at present serves because the UN-Habitat Youth 2030 Cities Coordinator for Colombia and Ecuador.
For Catherine Stallsmith ’22, who graduated from Elon with a level in political science, working with the USAID is a matter of world significance. “USAID Administrator Samantha Energy says, ‘Our fates are related to the fates of individuals in every single place,’” Stallsmith mentioned. “I firmly imagine that this philosophy is vital when acknowledging overseas help; enhancing the lives of others doesn’t simply serve those that we work alongside, however it improves our programs in the USA as properly. I’m hoping to be a Disaster, Stabilization, and Governance (CSG) officer after I start my profession.”
Like Garner, Stallsmith spent her adolescence overseas, which she cites because the driving issue behind her pursuit of worldwide work. When COVID-19 disrupted Catherine’s plans to check overseas at Elon, she pursued an internship in Washington, D.C. working as an Worldwide Coverage and Diplomacy Fellow for the United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD).
She remained in Washington, D.C. following commencement and at present serves because the Civics Partnerships Coordinator on the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Basis.
Each Garner and Stallsmith will enroll in graduate applications targeted on worldwide relations this fall following the completion of their first summer season internships in Washington, D.C.
Along with the Payne Fellowship, each have been named finalists for the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program in previous years: Garner to show English in Colombia, and Stallsmith to show English in North Macedonia. The previous had her grant canceled to as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and the latter declined for a job alternative.
Moreover, present Elon scholar Emerson Wells ’23 was named a finalist and eventual alternate for the Payne Fellowship. Emerson has additionally been named a semi-finalist for the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program and a finalist for Princeton in Africa. She is awaiting last outcomes for each awards.
When requested what recommendation they’ve for Elon college students and alumni inquisitive about making use of for Payne and different fellowships, Garner and Stallsmith shared the next items of recommendation.
“Do it,” Garner mentioned merely. “In case you are inquisitive about worldwide research and wish to determine the way to reside and work overseas, that is an incredible alternative. And even when it doesn’t work out, you’ll have had the prospect to work with Dr. Cahill and Nicole which makes it greater than value it!”
Stallsmith shared, “Be your self, and don’t attempt to curate any of your experiences to be what you suppose of us wish to hear – be trustworthy, and that can shine by means of greater than anything.”
To be taught extra about The USAID Donald M. Payne Worldwide Improvement Graduate Fellowship Program and different nationally aggressive awards just like the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program, go to the Nationwide and Worldwide Fellowships Workplace’s web site.