The MES has produced a number of distinguished alumni. Here's a partial list of the awards and fellowships our alumni have received:
Madison Marks received a Winthrop King Scholarship in Arabic Studies, was named a Rhodes Scholarship finalist, and was awarded the Boren Scholarship. She now works as the Director of the Social Innovation Lab at Johns Hopkins. Madison will be awarded the 2021 Notable Noles Award.
Jesse Marks received the Boren Scholarship, Scoville Peace Fellowship, Fulbright Scholarship, and became the first FSU student to earn the Schwarzman Scholarship. He is now a Foreign Affairs Specialist at the Department of Defense. Jesse will be presented with the 2021 Reubin O'D Askew Young Alumni Award, the highest honor bestowed upon young alumni by the FSU Alumni Association.
Steven Firmin spent six months in Egypt teaching English after graduating FSU before beginning a Masters in Christian Ethics at the University of Oxford. He is now working on his Doctorate focusing on political secularism in Augustinian Christianity and Sunni Islam.
Kelly Baker studied Arabic in Oman on a SALAM scholarship and then received a Boren Scholarship to study Arabic in Jordan. After returning to the US, she interned at the Middle East Institute working as a Research Assistant to the Director, Dr. Paul Salem.
Courtney Reed interned at the Children's Campaign and Amnesty International and completed her honors thesis on operational barriers in Jordan for NGOs and civil society groups. She is a Masters student at the London School of Economics studying International Social and Public Policy Development.
Avan Aziz received a summer award to travel to the Kurdish regional area of Iraq in order to study marriage patterns between Sunni and Shia Muslims as well as between Kurds and Arabs.
Brandon Beardsley received a Boren or National Security Exchange Program Fellowship in 2010-2011 to study Arabic in Jordan.
C.J. Canton is the recipient of two Critical Language Scholarships issued by the United States State Department as part of the National Security Language Initiative to expand the number of speakers of Arabic, Chinese, Russian, and Urdu. This is an all expenses paid scholarship. C.J. received one scholarship to study Arabic in Oman and then another to study Urdu in Lucknow, India.
Georges Fontes received a Flagship Language Program fellowship to continue his Arabic studies for two years, one at the University of Maryland and the other in Egypt. He also received the Boren or National Security Exchange Program Fellowship to study Arabic in Egypt.
Ibrahim Kareem was selected to participate in the Ibrahim Leadership and Dialogue Project in the summer of 2009. He went on a fully funded trip to Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates, Amman (Jordan), Jerusalem, and Tel Aviv (Israel).
Jamie Kozisek, a MES major and former assistant for the MEC, won the Gilman Scholarship in the Spring of 2006 to attend the Arabic Language Institute of Fez, Morocco.
Cate Layton received the Critical Language Scholarship to study Arabic in Morocco.
Ann Lippitt is the recipient of the Critical Language Scholarship for Arabic Studies in Jordan.
Jesse Lynch received a Flagship Language Program fellowship to continue her Arabic studies for two years, one at the University of Maryland and the other in Syria. He also received the Boren or National Security Exchange Program fellowship to study Arabic in Egypt.
Alexander Merkovic-Orenstein, a Middle Eastern Studies major who graduated in Spring 2009, was named a 2009 Truman Scholar--one of only 65 selected from throughout the United States and its territories each year. With the scholarship, Alex will receive $30,000 to study at the graduate level. He completed a Masters degree at the School of Oriental and African studies in London, England.
Jonathan Mouzon received the National Security Internship and Arabic Studies Award in the summer of 2009 in a program that combines Arabic language instruction and an internship at the US Department of Homeland Security or FBI Headquarters.
Victoria Penziner Hightower received a Fulbright to the United Arab Emirates to research the history of its environment and the pearl industry. She completed her Doctorate here at FSU in the Spring of 2011 and now teaches at North Georgia College and State University in Dahlonega, Georgia.
Eric Stenberg is the recipient of the Critical Language Scholarship for Arabic Studies for the study of Arabic in Tangiers, Morocco while living at the American School in Tangiers during Summer 2009. He graduated from FSU in Spring 2009 with a double major in Political Science and International Affairs.
Our students have also gone on to graduate studies at a number of prestigious institutions, such as Georgetown University, American University, Princeton University, Harvard University, Columbia University, and the School of Oriental and African Studies of the University of London.