Pitzer College Student Receives Gilman International Scholarship and Freeman-ASIA Award to Study Abroad
Claremont, Calif. (December 5, 2012) — Pitzer College student Nicholas Romo '14 has been awarded a Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship as well as a Freeman-ASIA award to study in Beijing through the Pitzer in China program in spring 2013. Both awards are competitive national programs designed to increase global understanding by supporting undergraduate students who want to study abroad.
The Gilman scholarship program provides awards for US undergraduate students who are receiving Federal Pell Grant funding at a two-year or four-year college or university to participate in study abroad programs worldwide. The Freeman Awards for Study in Asia (Freeman-ASIA) supports American undergraduates with demonstrated financial need who are planning to study overseas in East or Southeast Asia.
Romo became fascinated by China and its role in the Pacific Rim during an internship in the City of Los Angeles mayor's office this past summer.
"I'm really interested in the relationship between my city and the international community," said Romo, who began studying Chinese this semester.
After returning from China, Romo plans to visit high schools in the Los Angeles neighborhood where he grew up to talk about his experiences.
"I want to get kids in my community excited about going abroad and help them draw connections across oceans," Romo said.
Michael Ballagh, associate vice president of study abroad and international programs at Pitzer, said Romo understands how what happens close to home can be related to international events 6,000 miles away.
"Pitzer College has an educational focus on tying global experiences to local communities and Nick's Freeman proposal exemplified this emphasis, seeking to more closely understand the ways in which China and Chinese culture have impacted the dynamics of the Los Angeles community," Ballagh said.
Romo has worked in the Native American program at Pitzer's Community Engagement Center and with Jumpstart, an early education program for preschool children in low-income areas. He has also been active with Pitzer's Latino Student Union and is a member of the College's diversity committee.
This past spring, Romo was named a 2012 Newman Civic Fellow, an award that recognizes inspiring college student leaders who have worked to find solutions for challenges facing their communities.
Nicholas Romo majors in political studies and sociology at Pitzer College.