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Four W&L Students Awarded Boren Scholarships for Global Language Study The David L. Boren Scholarship supports the intensive study of languages deemed important to U.S. interests.

Four Washington and Lee University students were offered a David L. Boren Scholarship to support intensive language study around the world. The Boren Scholarship supports American students’ study of critical languages that are deemed important to U.S. interests, allowing students to study in and learn the language and culture of a country with the goal of applying this experience to their professional careers.

This year’s W&L recipients include:

  • Will Martin ’24 to study Russian in Kazakhstan.
  • Lela Casey ’25 to study Arabic in Jordan.
  • Jack Evans ’25 to study Russian in Kyrgyzstan.
  • Brandon Bishop ’26 to study Arabic.

Bishop has declined the Boren Scholarship to accept the Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals Fellowship. Charlotte Baker ’25 and Posi Oluwakuyide ’24 were selected as alternates.

“I’m so proud of all of our Boren applicants this year, each of whom devoted significant time, energy and imagination to crafting the strongest application materials they could,” said Matthew Loar, W&L’s director of fellowships and student research. “I’m especially excited for our newest Boren Scholars, who will have an opportunity to deepen their engagement with the world and strengthen their global citizenship through intensive language study abroad.”

Will Martin ’24

Will-Martin-350x233 Four W&L Students Awarded Boren Scholarships for Global Language StudyMartin, a global politics and Russian area studies double major from Little Rock, Arkansas, will study Russian in Kazakhstan. He is looking forward to expanding his Russian language skills while gaining tangible skills to apply to his future career.

“The Boren Scholarship will allow me to further my understanding of the Russian language and pick up on cultural nuances only possible with total immersion,” Martin said.

On campus, Martin is a member of Pi Kappa Phi fraternity and served on the 2024 Mock Convention platform committee.

Lela Casey ’25

Lela-Casey-350x233 Four W&L Students Awarded Boren Scholarships for Global Language StudyCasey is a global politics major with minors in poverty and human capability studies and Middle Eastern and South Asian studies. With the Boren Scholarship, she will study Arabic in Jordan and is looking forward to further strengthening her language skills in an immersive setting. Casey also received a Critical Language Scholarship for the summer of 2024 to study Arabic in Oman.

A native of Charlotte, North Carolina, Casey believes the Boren Scholarship will help direct her education and career goals as she intends to pursue a master’s degree in public policy and a federal service career focused on foreign affairs or policy analysis. While in Jordan, she will work with government and non-profit organizations and hopes to learn more about the political and economic effects of the country’s ongoing refugee crisis.

“I hope to complete an internship and live with a local Jordanian family, and I will also be required to take Arabic classes,” Casey said. “This will be great for my language growth because I can take more advanced Arabic classes and practice the dialect.”

At W&L, Casey is treasurer of Campus Kitchen, an ambassador for the Office of Inclusion and Engagement, a trip leader for Volunteer Venture and a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She is also a virtual student federal service intern with the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Language Services, where she helps recruit undergraduate students to serve as interpreters and translators.

Jack Evans ’25

Jack-Evans-1-350x233 Four W&L Students Awarded Boren Scholarships for Global Language StudyFor Evans, receiving a Boren Scholarship to study Russian in Kyrgyzstan is a great opportunity to return to a region he has long had an interest in and continue developing his linguistic and cultural proficiency. In 2023, Evans studied in Poland through the Gilman Scholarship and is grateful to W&L for making these immersive learning opportunities possible.

A double major in East European and Russian studies and global politics, Evans is looking forward to living and learning in a less well known region of the world and improving his language skills in an immersive environment. He is also grateful for the chance to jumpstart a federal service career as part of the scholarship’s requirement to work for the federal government for one year after graduation.

“Receiving the Boren Scholarship is an honor that will simultaneously strengthen my language skills, expand my cultural understanding and prepare me for a career,” said the Ashland, Kentucky native.

On campus, Evans is the lending library coordinator for the First-Generation Low-Income Team and serves as an advocate for the Blue Ridge Mile Clinic.

If you know a W&L student who has done great, accolade-worthy things, tell us about them! Nominate them for an accolade.