Fordham University            The Jesuit University of New York

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Students Earn Prestigious International Prizes

Students earn Prestigious International Prizes

Two Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (GSAS) students recently won some of the world’s most competitive international prizes.

Christopher Beck, a doctoral candidate in history, won the Bourse Chateaubriand, a highly competitive nine-month fellowship given by the education office of the French Embassy to 15 doctoral students at American universities.  Beck believes a self-financed 10-day trip to Marseille that Fordham’s Graduate School of Arts and Science allowed him to take during the 2006 school year helped swing the French government’s decision his way.

In anticipation of the Chateaubriand, which requires its fellows contribute to French academia, Beck will take advantage of a GSAS summer fellowship to research an article or seminar on a French subject.

GSAS Summer Fellowships provide support to students who are candidates for prestigious fellowships and who wish to devote their summer to work for publication and conference papers.  The awards are funded by gifts from alumni to the GSAS Annual Fund.

“Fordham has been very good to me,” Beck said.  “The people at the prestigious fellowships office and the faculty know how to help us get these awards; I couldn’t have done it myself.”

While Beck is off to Marseille, Joseph Clair, GSAS ’07, is headed to Cambridge University in London, England, in October as a Gates Cambridge Scholar. Clair, who is currently a teaching fellow in Fordham’s philosophy department, stood out from more than 10,000 international applicants for a Gates Cambridge Scholarship, which was established by Bill and Melinda Gates in October 2000.

Clair was awarded the scholarship in February, becoming the second Fordham graduate to earn a Gates Cambridge Scholarship and the first GSAS alumnus.  In 2007, he also received GSAS’s summer fellowship program.

As part of the fellowship, Clair traveled to Rome, where he studied St. Augustine’s City of God and the process of political secularization.  Clair will continue to study Augustine’s philosophical treatise at Cambridge.

He credits GSAS’s summer fellowship program, for his recent success and for helping him figure out how to apply what he’s learned at Fordham to the world at large.

“[Fordham’s] funding makes these experiences possible,” he said.  “It lets you connect your knowledge with the broader world.”

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