Jarahn Hillsman of CSUN's Urban Studies and Planning Program, one of 10 undergraduate winners from across the country, will be attending the first year of a master's program this fall in international public affairs at Columbia University in New York City. The home universities of other fellowship recipients this year included Harvard, Georgetown, Brown and Howard.
"It is my goal to work in Africa. I hope to address issues such as AIDS, debt relief, government corruption and the fight against poverty," Hillsman said. "This fellowship will provide me with an incredible opportunity to attend graduate school and prepare for a career at the same time. I became interested in foreign affairs and the fellowship program when I interned with the U.S. State Department in Washington, D.C."
The purpose of the Graduate Foreign Affairs Fellowship is to prepare outstanding students from all ethnic and social backgrounds for careers as foreign service officers in the U.S. State Department. The award covers full-time tuition and expenses for two years in a master's program in public policy, international affairs or similar fields.
"We in Urban Studies are quite thrilled that Jarahn Hillsman is the first student at CSUN to receive this prestigious fellowship award. Jarahn is a very delightful and promising student," said Tim Dagodag, professor and coordinator of CSUN's Urban Studies and Planning Program.
Hillsman, a Los Angeles resident, attended CSUN for the past five years and graduated in May with a bachelor's degree in urban studies and planning. He also participated in CSUN's international exchange program at the University of Zimbabwe for one semester and was elected as a member of Phi Beta Delta, an honor society for international scholars.
Applicants for the Graduate Foreign Affairs Fellowship must be U.S. citizens, have a minimum 3.2 grade point average (based on a 4.0 scale) and have received a bachelor's degree. The Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation-an independent, nonprofit organization-seeks to maximize human potential by awarding education fellowships in various fields.