Boren Awardees and UNC-Chapel Hill students: Marissa Muller, James Hepburn and Nicole Behnke.

Three University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill students are being recognized by the National Security Education Program with Boren Awards, which support fields of study identified as critical to the national security of the United States, particularly language study.

Nicole Behnke and James Hepburn were two of 106 graduate students chosen for David L. Boren Fellowships and Marissa Muller was one of 244 undergraduate students chosen for a David L. Boren Scholarship. Graduate student Devin Duque was also chosen as an alternate for the Boren Fellowship. Behnke and Hepburn are the 18th and 19th Boren Fellows from Carolina and Muller is the University’s 15th Boren Scholar. The Boren Awards program provides U.S. undergraduate and graduate students with resources and encouragement to acquire language skills and experience in countries critical to the future security and stability of our nation. In exchange for funding, Boren Award recipients agree to work in the federal government for at least one year.

“Thanks to the National Security Education Program, three Carolina students will advance their language skills and understanding of other cultures, which will help them better serve our nation and the world,” said Interim Chancellor Kevin M. Guskiewicz. “A nation’s major challenges usually have global dimensions that require global solutions. Nicole, James and Marissa’s accomplishments demonstrate their global mindsets. Thanks to the Boren Awards, they will further their studies and work in areas critical to our national security.”

“We are delighted that three of our talented Carolina students have won Boren Awards to study Chinese, Arabic and Polish. This is a new record for us. These students all aspire to use their language learning in ways that will increase the security of the United States and its allies,” said Professor Inger Brodey, director of the Office of Distinguished Scholarships.

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Originally published May 3, 2019.

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