Fellow Spotlight

Abigail DeHart

The Hauenstein Center is excited to announce that Cook Leadership Academy Fellow Abigail DeHart of Saginaw, Michigan has been selected to receive a prestigious 2014-2015 Josephine DeKarman Fellowship. A double major in classics and philosophy, DeHart was one of eight undergraduate and graduate students from across the nation to receive this fellowship for the next academic year. The vast majority of awards go to students at top-tier schools.

The Josephine DeKarman Fellowship Trust was established in 1954 by the late Dr. Theodore Von Karman, world-renowned aeronautics expert and first director of the Guggenheim Aeronautical Laboratory at the California Institute of Technology, in memory of his sister, Josephine, who passed away in 1951.

DeKarman fellowships are only open to undergraduates and PhD candidates, and competition is extreme. For the 2013-2014 cycle, the committee reviewed 434 applications and awarded eight fellowships. Undergraduate applicants have exceptional recommendations and grades, with a compelling record of original research or scholarship.

Before beginning at Grand Valley State University, DeHart spent a year with AmeriCorps NCCC which involved traveling the country and working with different nonprofit organizations. This service learning experience—the good and the bad—sparked her interest in public policy and the potential interrelatedness of the business and nonprofit worlds.

As a student she is involved with the Philosophy Club, CLAS Student Advisory Committee, and volunteers with the Gerald R. Ford Job Corps Center.

DeHart is currently finishing up a year abroad in Varanasi, India as a Barbara H. Padnos International Scholar where she is studying language, music, Indian culture, and conducting a yearlong research project concerning equality within the Indian educational system.

Grad school is assuredly in the future, and she hopes to continue working toward promoting the understanding that educational equality is a necessary underpinning to global peace and security.

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