Van Court & Meyers win Gilman Scholarships

Thu, 2013-06-06 11:37 am

Two Grinnell College students will have an opportunity to pursue longstanding interests while studying abroad, thanks to scholarships from the Gilman Foundation.

Jordan Meyers '15 

Meyers, a third year from McMinnville, Ore., is spending summer and fall at Beijing Foreign Studies University in Beijing, China. A pre-med student with an English major and a concentration in East Asian Studies, Meyers will study Mandarin intensively, while also taking a Chinese history course and shadowing a physician through an internship at Beijing United Family Hospital.

He is the founder and director of Volunteers at Grinnell High School, a student organization that helps Grinnell College students volunteer at the high school by tutoring, providing technology support, designing Web sites and tutoring in the English as a Second Language program. Meyers volunteers in the surgery department waiting room at Grinnell Regional Medical Center for four hours every week. After graduating, he hopes to volunteer with the Peace Corps and then attend medical school.

Rachel Van Court '15

Van Court, a third year from Niwot, Colo., will spend the 2013-14 academic year participating in a program on Human Evolution and the Ecology of the Serengeti, sponsored by the Associated Colleges of the Midwest. Very active in food and sustainability issues at Grinnell, Van Court also will conduct anthropological or biological research while in Tanzania.

Van Court is a double major in anthropology and biological chemistry. At Grinnell, she has been active in sustainability issues, volunteering for Oxfam, coordinating the College's Food House and the local food co-op, and managing the Food House garden. She was on campus this summer to conduct a Mentored Advanced Project on the industrialization of agriculture. After graduating from Grinnell she says she "is very committed to helping the world food and agriculture system," perhaps through permaculture farming. She is also thinking of attending medical school.

About the Gilman Scholarship

The Gilman Scholarship provides awards to U.S. undergraduate students receiving federal Pell Grants so that they can take part in study-abroad programs worldwide. The program encourages students to choose non-traditional study-abroad destinations, especially those outside of Western Europe, Australia and New Zealand. This international study is intended to better prepare U.S. students to assume significant roles in an increasingly global economy and interdependent world.