WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA – Franklin resident Miriam Edele has won the prestigious Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship to study this summer in Cusco, Peru.
A senior student at , Edele is a major in politics. She leaves for Peru at the end of June. Under the direction of International Studies Abroad, she will take several courses, including Latin American and American Relations and Inca Civilizations. With her Gilman Fellowship, she will travel to the U.S. Embassy in Peru for behind-the-scenes tours and networking.
The Gilman Fellowship is a program of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) of the United States Department of State.
“This award is highly competitive on par with the Fulbright Award,” said Dr. Carl Miller, who directs the prestigious PBA National Scholarship Program.
“I always dreamed of going to Peru,” said Edele. Her father did missionary work in Peru when she was a child, and she fondly remembers the memories and photos he brought home.
Edele entered PBA as a vocal performance major, but in her freshman year, “just for fun,” she took an international relations course with Dr. Francisco Plaza, a professor of politics.
“I loved the class,” she said. “It was so interesting.”
Edele changed her major to politics, imbibing other courses taught by Plaza and other professors. She also interned at the University’s LeMieux Center for Public Policy.
After graduating from the PBA in December, Edele plans to pursue graduate studies in international relations, possibly studying abroad. She hopes to one day serve in an American Embassy.
“Wherever God leads me, she said, I will be happy to go.
The Gilman Fellowship is named after the late Benjamin A. Gilman, who served in the United States House of Representatives for 30 years and chaired the House Foreign Relations Committee.
Gilman, from New York, believes that study abroad “offers our students the opportunity to return home with a deeper understanding of their place in the world, encouraging them to be a contributor rather than a spectator in the international community”.