Six university juniors named Scholars in the Nation’s Service

By Katie Wagner, Staff Writer
   Six Princeton University juniors will spend the summer interning at federal departments and agencies.
   These 2008 Scholars in the Nation’s Service at Princeton were selected by the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs from applicants interested in pursuing careers in the federal government.
   In addition to participating in the internships, the students will be required to take specific public policy courses during their final three semesters as undergraduates, work for a government department or agency for two years following graduation and enroll in the Woodrow Wilson School’s two-year master in public affairs program after completing their two years of federal government service.
   The students undergraduate work and activities will be funded by individual donors to the program, while their graduate work and education will be funded by the Robertson Foundation, a supporting organization of the university that resulted from a 1961 donation of $35 million in shares of the Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Co. from Marie Robertson for expanding and supporting the Woodrow Wilson School’s graduate program.
   This spring, five students from other colleges will receive similar Robertson Foundation scholarships to enroll in the Woodrow Wilson School’s two-year master in public affairs program. These scholarships will also provide opportunities for two-year federal government jobs.
   The Woodrow Wilson School and the Partnership for Public Service, a Washington D.C.-based, nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, work with recipients of the scholarships to match their skills with their summer internships and two-year jobs with the federal government.
   The first recipients of the scholarships began their federal government internships last summer, working for the State Department’s Office of International Health and Biodefense, the State Department’s Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, the Naval Forces-Japan, the State Department’s Western Hemisphere Affairs office and the State Department’s Bureau of East Asian and Pacific Affairs, and the Office of Asian and Pacific Security Affairs at the Department of Defense.
   The locations of the 2007 scholars’ two-year federal service jobs and 2008 scholars’ internships are still being determined and will be announced “in the near future,” according to Steve Barnes, a spokesman for the Woodrow Wilson School.
   The 2008 scholarship recipients include:
   • Cynthia Barmore, a Woodrow Wilson School major who hopes to enter into foreign service or the Peace Corps;
   • Shannon Brink, a Woodrow Wilson School major who has ambitions to work for the U.S. Agency for International Development or the foreign service in Latin America;
   • Michael Konialian, a mechanical and aerospace engineering major earning a Woodrow Wilson School certificate who hopes to work as a policy staff member at NASA or the White House;
   • Emily Norris, a Woodrow Wilson School major, who studies Middle East issues;
   • Brendan Reilly, a politics major who is interested in working at the Defense Department or State Department or at the Defense Intelligence Agency; and
   • Michael Shapiro, a Woodrow Wilson School major who would like to work in the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, at the Department of Health and Human Services or on Capitol Hill.
   According to a news release from the university, the scholarship program provides a mechanism for following the mission of the Robertson Foundation in that it encourages scholars to specifically pursue careers in those areas of the federal government that are concerned with international relations and affairs.
   Plaintiffs in pending litigation against the university, who are Robertson family trustees on the Robertson Foundation Board, believe the scholarship program does not go far enough in training Woodrow Wilson graduate students for positions in federal government departments. The current Robertson family trustees and other plaintiffs are claiming that the foundation’s funds should be limited to a vocational program designed for the sole purpose of training students for positions in federal departments that students should fill upon graduation.