Three scholarships awarded

by Jennifer Hickey | 5/6/98 5:00am

Miranda Johnson '97, who recently joined four other Dartmouth students who have been awarded Fulbright Scholarships, will study in Tanzania next year, according to the Committee on Graduate Fellowships.

Bradley Evans '98 and Arthur McKeown '97 will also study abroad, on James B. Reynolds Scholarships.

Johnson plans to study at the Institute for Development Studies at the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania next year. After taking several preparatory classes on rural development, Johnson will conduct field research on women's groups and grassroots economic development.

In addition to observing and evaluating development programs already in place, Johnson will help set up new programs for women in the development of rural areas of the country.

English Professor Ivy Schweitzer, who worked with Johnson through the Presidential Scholars program, said she thinks this combination of academic and field work was what made Johnson's proposal so good.

"Miranda is an incredibly focused, experienced and committed person ... both as a scholar and as an activist," Schweitzer said.

Johnson is currently teaching at Eagle Rock School in Illinois, a school for young students who have had trouble in traditional academic programs.

The Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board awards students and other members of academic communities federal government grants to conduct research in other nations in an effort to increase the mutual understanding between different nations.

Johnson could not be reached for comment.

McKeown, winner of a Reynolds Scholarship, will travel to Nepal in October to explore the relationship between clerical and lay adherents to Tibetan Buddhism.

"Hopefully by the end of it, I will be able to compare the relationship between the clerics and the people, and compare this to western Christianity," McKeown said.

While at the College, McKeown developed his own major in Irish Studies. McKeown did not take any anthropology or sociology courses. His interest in Tibetan Buddhism actually stemmed from his senior thesis on the merger of pre-Christian religions and Christianity in Ireland.

McKeown said that in Tibet he hopes to conduct research similar to his thesis research by studying lay people's views on the role and responsibilities of Buddhist clerics.

To do this, McKeown will have to travel around the country, comparing hierarchical sects of Buddhism to less orthodox sects, he said.

History Professor Bruce Nelson, a member of the Committee on Graduate Fellowships, said the committee was "fascinated" by McKeown's knowledge of Ireland and the synthesis of different religions in a single environment.

Evans also won a Reynolds Scholarship and will study political development and culture among the Uyghur minority of northwest China next year.

Evans said he was originally an alternate for the Reynolds Scholarship, but the large number of Fulbright scholars this year "freed up some slots" for Reynolds scholars.

He was notified at the end of Winter term that he was an alternate. He did not find out he had received the scholarship until last Thursday -- the same day his government thesis was due and he "was going crazy over footnotes."

His research will be, in some ways, a continuation of his thesis work on Uyghurs. "I'll be looking at how they are developing as a political force," he said.

But since the Uyghurs do not all speak Mandarin Chinese, Evans will also have to learn to speak Uyghurs, a Turkish language.

While most of his scholarship will be in project form, he said, the language learning will be mostly studying.

The Reynolds Scholarship awards $12,000 to each recipient to pursue their study of interest in a foreign country. Current seniors and alumni who are no more than five years out of the College and are U.S. citizens may apply for the grant.

Abigail Gordon '98, Kwang Kim '98, Arvidas Remeza '98 and Justin Stearns '98 were awarded Fulbrights earlier this year.