Cultural understanding’s at the heart of three recent awards

Exploring Asian American Identity

Since childhood, Daisy Okazaki ’25 has told stories informed by their experience as an Asian American. Now a media studies major and Asian American studies minor, Okazaki has received support from the Margo Okazawa-Rey (MOR) Fellowship to produce a film. Okazaki is featuring members of Banteay Srei, which promotes community and leadership development for young Southeast Asian women.

“I am interested in telling stories through film and art that are relevant and uplifting towards Asian American communities and histories,” said Okazaki.

The MOR Fellowship is offered by the Community Engagement Center (read the story) and the Intercollegiate Department of Asian American Studies at The Claremont Colleges.

Cultivating Foreign Affairs

Mark Perez Navarro ’24, a political studies senior, is one of 45 fellows in the Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship Program. Perez Navarro is the first Pitzer student to receive this fellowship. Through the fellowship, the Department of State finances a two-year master’s graduate program and a career in the foreign service.

Perez Navarro plans to specialize in international security and U.S. foreign policy. He will enter the U.S. Foreign Service, taking assignments in various embassies and consulates across regions that include Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America.

Costa Rican Cultural Immersion

Zhané Moledina ’25 has received the U.S. Department of State’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship, which enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad. Moledina is participating in the Pitzer in Costa Rica program this spring.

Moledina is majoring in political studies and organizational studies with a minor in Spanish. She plans to advance her Spanish language skills as she stays with a host family and studies in San José and Pitzer’s Firestone Center for Restoration Ecology, which is near the town of Dominical.

“These experiences will promote both my professional and personal development by empowering me to surpass my limits, explore new horizons, and forge meaningful connections,” said Moledina.