Grant encourages women to think globally
Last year, the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women (JFEW) awarded SUNY a grant to establish the JFEW-SUNY International Relations and Global Affairs Scholarship Program for students at Binghamton University and Stony Brook University.
From Staff Reports
The program began with a summer internship for students entering their senior year; 12 Binghamton students were selected. Following a four-day orientation at the SUNY Levin Institute in Manhattan, where they learned about international relations and how to succeed in a professional environment, the interns were placed with a variety of international organizations. Along with the experience they gained at their host organizations, they took part in topical weekly seminars, participated in networking events, kept a daily journal and completed several assignments. Students received $5,000 for the internship.
Deanna D'Onofrio '12, a psychology major from Poughkeepsie, N.Y., who interned with charity:water, says, "The JFEW internship taught me essential skills regarding business etiquette, international relations and how to carry myself as a professional, all of which I will remember for the remainder of my career."
The second element of the scholarship program is the Two-Year Academic Program. Completed during students' junior and senior years, it includes an academic-year seminar series, a paid summer internship with international organizations, professional development activities, and opportunities to create mentor and peer networks.
Ten Binghamton students were selected for the 2011-13 program; another group will be chosen for 2012-14. These students participate in monthly seminars that give them an overview of key themes, vocabulary and resources in international relations and global affairs. They attend networking, professional development and mentoring sessions. They also complete assignments such as writing a detailed reflection piece following each seminar, authoring briefs of Foreign Affairs magazine articles and summarizing editorials authored by New York Times columnists. Students must also maintain a list of women leaders in the news and write a reflection piece about female leadership.
"Working with the JFEW-SUNY program has been an amazing experience," explains philosophy, politics and law major Kristiana Zuccarini '13 from Huntington, N.Y. "Through our monthly seminars and regular assignments, I have had the opportunity to combine knowledge learned inside the classroom and apply it to current, international affairs."
Scholarship recipients receive up to $5,000 each academic year, plus $5,000 for their internship. In all, the JFEW-SUNY grant will provide more than $600,000 in scholarship funding at each campus over three years.
"SUNY is extremely grateful to the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women for their generosity and vision in making the program possible," says Maryalice Mazzara, director of academic affairs, SUNY Levin Institute. "The JFEW-SUNY International Relations and Global Affairs program is world-class in the quality of its internships and programming. The students have excelled and represent SUNY with pride."
Meg Mitzel, experiential educational coordinator for the Career Development Center, serves as Binghamton University's liaison for the program, and Seden Akcinaroglu, assistant professor of political science, serves as an advisor.
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