The 2013 OPC Foundation Scholars
DAVID R. SCHWEISBERG MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP
Jad Sleiman, Temple University
Like the foreign correspondents who founded OPC, Jad earned his bylines covering conflict as a combat correspondent for the US Marine Corps. No stranger to war, he grew up spending summers in war-weary Lebanon. Fluent in Levantine Arabic, Jad wrote about watching a group of Marines training Ugandan soldiers to face extremism in East Africa and the young Ugandans’ surprising resiliency.
Anders Melin, New York University
A native of Sweden, Anders wrote about the little known fact that the European Union is the world’s largest subsidizer of agricultural activity, a line item that consumes 40 percent of the EU budget and yet 90 percent of the recipients are unknown. A graduate of the University of Missouri, Anders will spend his OPC Foundation internship in the Reuters bureau in Brussels.
HARPER’S MAGAZINE SCHOLARSHIP in memory of I.F.STONE
Mateo Hoke, University of California-Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism
Mateo is currently working on two main projects, traditional plant medicines in the Peruvian Amazon and life in the occupied Palestinian territories, the subject of his winning essay and the place where he has spent most of the last two years working on a book. A graduate of the University of Colorado-Boulder, the multimedia journalist wrote about tear gas launchers and victims in the small village of Bil’in.
IRENE CORBALLY KUHN SCHOLARSHIP
Marina Villeneuve, Dartmouth College
Marina’s winning essay was about the disproportionate impact of climate change on the vulnerable, indigenous populations of Mexico which is in the throes of its worst drought in 70 years. Her focus was the small village of Xaltipan and the consequences when the nearest river gradually dries up. Conversant in Spanish, Marina intends to return to Columbia, her homeland, for six months after college as a news assistant and researcher for NPR.
H.L. STEVENSON INTERNSHIP
Tom Finn, New York University
As a British Fulbright scholar, Tom is pursuing a dual master’s degree in journalism and near eastern studies. He began his career with the Yemen Times and later covered Yemen for a variety of news outlets. In his essay, he described the dangerous plight of illegal immigrants who are frequent kidnapping targets of Yemen’s criminal gangs. A graduate of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies, he has an OPC Foundation internship in the Reuters bureau in Cairo.
STAN SWINTON INTERNSHIP
Justine Drennan, Cambridge University
As a Princeton-in-Asia fellow at the Phnom Penh Post, Justine covered the deportation of a Swedish hacker and possible WikiLeaks collaborator. She wrote how international aid often plays a role in the Cambodian politics of deporting foreign criminals. A graduate of Princeton University, Justine has an OPC Foundation internship in the AP bureau
EMANUEL R. FREEDMAN SCHOLARSHIP
Christopher Harress, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Christopher studied journalism at Edinburgh Napier University so he could tell the stories he experienced as a sub-lieutenant in the Royal Navy. Now a committed investigative journalist, he wrote about the unknown world of human trafficking in soccer players. His essay focused on the 1,000 young Africans living in poverty in Paris, having been drawn there by the promises of unscrupulous fake football agents-a practice that will only get worse in the run-up to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar.
THEO WILSON SCHOLARSHIP
Patricia Rey Mellen, CUNY Graduate School of Journalism
A native of Spain and a graduate of the Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Patricia wrote about the perils of illegal mining in Peru, a story she covered while there on an internship with LaRepublica. She focused her essay on the impoverished family of a college student who perished in a mine collapse, a not uncommon occurrence in a country where 500,000 are engaged in the illegal enterprise. She is fluent in English and French and proficient in Portuguese.
ROY ROWAN SCHOLARSHIP
Stephen Kalin, American University in Cairo
Now living in Cairo on a year-long Arabic language immersion fellowship program funded by the U.S. Department of Education, Stephen is the first in his family in a century to return to their Middle East roots. The Davidson College graduate wrote about the humanitarian efforts of Syrian refugees in Egypt helping their countrymen adjust to the hardships of their temporary home. He is the first recipient of an OPC Foundation internship with the GlobalPost.
FLORA LEWIS INTERNSHIP
Adriane Quinlan, University of Minnesota
Adriane will spend her OPC Foundation internship at the AP bureau in Beijing, the city that convinced her to become a foreign correspondent. Having lived there as a freelancer and speed typist in the lead-up to the 2008 Olympics, the Yale graduate, who is currently pursuing an MFA in creative writing, wrote about theme parks in China, specifically, her own Beijing rite of passage: a trip to World Park.
S&P AWARD FOR ECONOMIC AND BUSINESS REPORTING
Xiaoqing Pi, University of California at Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism
A graduate of Fudan University, Xiaoqing is fascinated with the Chinese tech industry, especially its largest tech companies and the under- covered stories of their connections to oppressed regimes and reliance on Chinese government support for success in global markets. Having interned already for The New York Times in Shanghai and the Phnom Penh Post, Xiaoqing will continue her work with an OPC Foundation internship in the Reuters bureau in Beijing.
JERRY FLINT INTERNSHIP FOR INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS REPORTING
Valerie Hopkins, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Having grown up in Voice of America newsrooms, Valerie always knew her passion was international reporting. Proficient in three Balkan languages, she has spent the last 2.5 years in Bosnia and Herzegovina. She wrote about countries that condone tax havens and money laundering, including the US. A graduate of William & Mary, she has an OPC Foundation internship in the Reuters bureau in Belgrade.
THE WALTER & BETSY CRONKITE SCHOLARSHIP
Frederick Bernas, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
The unlikely topic of Frederick’s winning essay concerned a hip-hop battle of the bands for musicians within Mexico City’s prisons and their message of hope and rehabilitation. Fluent in Russian, the former Moscow-based broadcast journalist has sets his sites on Latin America. A graduate of the University of Bristol in England, he has an OPC Foundation internship in the AP bureau in Buenos Aires.
NATHAN S. BIENSTOCK MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP
Jacob Kushner, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Jacob intends to use the investigative skills honed during a two-year stretch in Haiti to uncover the stories and human consequences of China’s rise in Africa. In his essay, the University of Wisconsin-Madison graduate reported on how the rapidly deteriorating Sudanese economy may lead to the ouster of its 23-year Arab president. Fluent in Spanish, Jacob has an OPC Foundation internship in the AP bureau in Nairobi.