Office of Fellowships announces 2022-23 award winners


George Mason University’s Office of Fellowships works with students and alumni to help them find and apply to nationally competitive awards that support their academic, professional, and personal goals. Director Megan Bruening calls the office a “one-stop shop” for students seeking fellowships.

“We are here to guide them through the entire process and meet students wherever they are at in their academic journeys,” she said.

That includes 1:1 advising, feedback on students’ application essays, interview coaching, and coordinating faculty and administrative committees to review and endorse student applications. The team also works with recommenders on reference letters and helps currently enrolled students with their post-award paperwork.

The number of fellowship applicants and recipients at Mason has increased by 15% each year since summer 2021, Bruening said.

The office is pleased to announce the following student fellowships awarded for the 2022-23 academic year.

American Association of University Women Grant
With a mission of gender equity and economic security, the aim of the American Association of University Women Grant is to support female researchers at all stages of their careers. The grant is designed to enable female researchers to gain more visibility, expand a network, or build more expertise.

  • Ingrid Guillen Marquina (College of Science [COS], Chemistry MS)

Boren Awards
Boren Scholarships (for undergraduate students) and Fellowships (for graduate students) provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad.

  • Scholars: Sannai James (College of Humanities and Social Sciences [CHSS], Global Affairs BA), Connor Brunson (CHSS, Global Affairs BA)
  • Fellows: Danyale Kellogg (Schar School of Policy and Government, Biodefense PhD), Jacob Davis (School of Business, Management BS)

Center for Disease Control Undergraduate Public Health Scholar
The CDC John R. Lewis Undergraduate Public Health Scholars (Lewis Scholars; formerly CDC Undergraduate Public Health Scholars [CUPS]) Program provides students, particularly those from populations that are underrepresented in public health professions, with career-building public health experiences.

  • Kristen Alleyne (College of Public Health [CPH], Community Health BS, Honors College)

Cosmos Scholars Grant
Awarded by the Cosmos Club Foundation, Cosmos Scholar grants cover the costs of travel, special supplies, and other expenses that would enhance the scholarship for recipients in various academic fields, including literature, biomedical sciences, regional studies, and engineering. 

  • Melissa DeLury (College of Education and Human Development [CEHD], Education PhD)
  • Anne Dobberteen (also received the Neilom Foundation Meritorious Award in Technology and Society from Cosmos; CHSS, Art History PhD)
  • Laura Fretwell (CHSS, History PhD)
  • Alena James (COS, Biosciences PhD)
  • Dylan Scarton (COS, Neuroscience PhD)

Critical Language Scholarship
The Critical Language Scholarship Program is an immersive summer opportunity for American college and university students to learn languages in regions that are critical to U.S. national security and economic prosperity.

  • Carma Elharazi (CHSS, Foreign Languages BA)
  • Aleah Johnson (CHSS, Foreign Languages BA, Honors College)
  • Ninamarie Avedissian (CEHD, Curriculum and Instruction MEd)
  • Gisselle Contreras (COS, Neuroscience)
    • Alternates: Dulguun Gantumur (CHSS, Global Affairs BA, Honors College), Kanwal Ahmad (College of Engineering and Computing (CEC), Electrical Engineering BS), Sara Michels (Schar, International Security MA)

 Foreign Affairs Information Technology Fellowship
The two-year Foreign Affairs Information Technology Fellowship from the U.S. Department of State aims to attract top technology talent that represents the ethnic, racial, gender, social, and geographic diversity of the United States. The two-year fellowship is a path to a career in the  Foreign Service and provides academic funding for an IT-related degree, internships, professional development and mentorship—culminating in an appointment in the Foreign Service as an Information Management Specialist.

  • Iyouel Endashaw (CEC Cybersecurity, BS)

Fulbright U.S. Student Program
The Fulbright U.S. Student Program aims to promote mutual understanding and peace between the United States and other nations through educational and cultural exchange. Students and college graduates apply for grants to study, conduct research, or teach English conversation and U.S. culture abroad while serving as citizen diplomats in the host country.

  • Morgan Swindall (ETA, Taiwan) (CHSS, Global Affairs MA)

    • Semifinalists: Ashagrie Abdi (Carter School for Peace and Conflict Resolution, Conflict Analysis and Resolution PhD), Medhini Sosale (CEC, Bioengineering BA, Honors College), Logan Lehman (Schar, Government and Politics BA, Honors College)

Gates-Cambridge Scholarship
The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is a fully funded international postgraduate award for students to study any subject at the University of Cambridge with the aim of building a global network of future leaders who are committed to improving the lives of others.

    • Semifinalist (first since 2015): Jasmine Okidi (CHSS, English BA, Honors College)

GEM Fellowship
The GEM Fellowship provides MS- and PhD-level students both financial support and internship opportunities to highly qualified, underrepresented students who wish to pursue graduate study in engineering or science.

  • Brenda Henriquez (CEC, Computer Science MS)

Goldwater Scholarship
Named after the former senator and presidential candidate, the Barry Goldwater Scholarship is a highly competitive national award for American undergraduate students in science, math and engineering who are committed to pursuing advanced degrees and research-oriented careers in STEM fields.

  • Lina Alkarmi (CEC, Electrical Engineering BS, Honors College)

Insight Collaborative Fellowship
The Insight Collaborative Fellowship Program helps individuals develop their own conflict management skills by working within local or international nonprofits of their choice. Each year-long Fellowship begins with a period of training and development before the fellow begins three global placements through which they share the best in conflict management theory and skills.

    • Semifinalist: Naomi Davis (awaiting final results, Carter, Conflict Analysis and Resolution MA)

National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program
The National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program supports outstanding students who are pursuing research-based master’s and doctoral degrees in STEM, STEM education, and social science fields at accredited U.S. institutions.

  • Samuel Schmidgall (CEC, Comp Sci BS)

Pickering Fellowship
The Thomas R. Pickering Graduate Fellowship is a U.S. Department of State program that seeks to attract and prepare outstanding young people, who represent ethnic, gender, social, and geographic diversity and have an interest in pursuing a Foreign Service career in the U.S. Department of State.

  • Quan Crawford (CHSS, Global Affairs BA)

Point Foundation Flagship Scholarship
The Point Flagship Scholarship empowers LGBTQ students who are earning their undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral degrees at accredited institutions in the Unites States. Flagship scholarship recipients receive financial support, access to multiple leadership development programs, mentorship or coaching, and the support of a community of scholars and alumni.

    • Semifinalist: CJ Mandell (awaiting final results, CPH, Public Health MA)

Presidential Management Fellowship
The Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Program is a two-year training and leadership development program at a United States government agency, administered by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, for advanced degree holders. After completing the program, agencies may convert PMFs to permanent federal civilian employees.

  • Adil Sailau (Scalia Law School, JD)
  • Nathan Danielson (Carter, Conflict Analysis and Resolution MS)
  • Nicholas Sherwood (Carter, Conflict Analysis and Resolution PhD)
  • Trinidee Baker (CEHD, Education Leaders MEd)
  • Isaac Gibbons (CEC, Cybersecurity MS)
  • Patrick Mason (CPH, Nutrition MS)
  • Joseph Pencak (CHSS, Economics MA)
  • Lindsey Schmidt (CHSS, Global Affairs MA)
  • Rose Kemmel (CHSS, IO Psychology MPS)
  • William Snyder (Schar, Transportation MA)
  • Sara Leming (Schar, Public Management CERG)
  • Michael Lodico (Schar, MPA)
  • Bianca Nelson (Schar, MPA)
  • Sylkin Barksdale (Schar, MPA)
  • Brandon Bryan (Schar, MPA)
  • Zachary Huebschman (Schar, MPA)
  • Whitney Guilford (Schar, MPA)
  • Tianwei Na (Business, MBA)

Rangel Fellowship
The Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Program is a State Department fellowship program that supports outstanding American students from diverse backgrounds in pursuing master’s degrees to prepare for diplomatic careers in the U.S. Foreign Service.

  • Natasha Taliferro (CHSS, Global Affairs BA)

Smithsonian Institute Guggenheim Grant
Guggenheim Fellowships are intended for men and women who have already demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts.

  • Anne Dobberteen (CHSS, Art History PhD)

Schwarzman Scholarship  
Schwarzman Scholarship is a one-year, fully funded master's degree in Global Affairs at Tsinghua University in Beijing, China. The program selects 100 to 200 Scholars per year based on their leadership ability, academic achievement, and commitment to advancing mutual cultural understanding and global progress.

  • Seminfinalist: Neuteyshe Felizor (CHSS, Government and Politics BA)