Mills, West named Fulbright award winners
Two members of the Class of 2022 have received Fulbright awards for the 2022-2023 academic year.
Cameron Mills ‘22 received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Spain. Erica West ‘22 will pursue a Master of Science in data-centric engineering in Finland courtesy of a Fulbright Graduate Degree Scholarship.
Cameron Mills ‘22, Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Spain
Mills, from North Vernon, Ind., is a double major in Spanish and political science with a minor in history.
“Four years ago, as a senior at Jennings County (Ind.) High School, I had a dream of someday mastering the Spanish language, in part because of pure fascination, but mostly because I wanted to somehow be involved in the diverse cultures, literature, and politics of the Spanish world,” Mills shared.
Mills will bridge the gap between Spanish and English speakers this fall while pursuing a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Spain.
“Hanover College charmed me because of their wonderful Spanish department and immersive study abroad opportunities which would prepare me to apply to service organizations, such as the Fulbright U.S. Student Program and the Peace Corps,” Mills said. “I decided to study Spanish, political science, and history to become an intermediary between English and Spanish speakers.”
Mills coupled his academic enrichment with student experiences. He starred in the production of Cervantes’ “The Devoted Guard” and served as a member of Student Senate, International Club, Mortar Board Honor Society and Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society. Additionally, Mills shared his knowledge with other students as a tutor in the Gladish Learning Center.
“During my time at Hanover, I have had the great pleasure to work on several bilingual projects with Dr. Rodríguez-Villar, like the translation of three plays by Calderón and the performance of Cervantes’ “The Devoted Guard,” Mills described. “I was also introduced to La Casa Amiga, a community organization that offers a bilingual learning environment for Latino students in the Madison area. It was through tutoring at La Casa Amiga that I discovered the power of cultivating bilingualism from a young age. These experiences in literature and education served as even further motivation to devote my skills to accessibility through service in language learning and translation. Thus, I began my application to the Fulbright Program in September (2021) to support our shared mission ‘to continue and extend the Fulbright tradition of education, advocacy and service’ as an English teaching assistant in Spain.”
The COVID-19 pandemic may have delayed his dream of studying abroad but it did not stop him. Mills began studying at the University of Castilla-La Mancha in Ciudad Real, Spain, at the start of 2022.
“Although I decided on Hanover because of what it meant for my language journey, I’m even happier that I can share everything that my experience has taught me with people learning my native language,” Mills recounted. “The Fulbright is the perfect opportunity to share the power and beauty of bilingualism and multiculturalism, and Hanover was the place that gave me that opportunity.”
Erica West ‘22, Fulbright Graduate Degree Scholarship to LUT in Finland
West will pursue a Master of Science in data-centric engineering at Lappeenranta-Lahti University of Technology (LUT), a public science university in Finland, courtesy of a Fulbright Graduate Degree Scholarship for the 2022-23 academic year.
“From the very beginning of freshman year, I knew that I wanted to study abroad in some way,” West described.
To ensure those plans did not lay dormant, West started having conversations with Uschi Appelt, director of study abroad and national scholarships, her first semester on campus.
“When COVID hit, I realized how desperately I really wanted to go abroad,” West stated. “It was no longer just a college bucket list item, it was a life dream. As my hopes for studying abroad as an undergrad dried and more of my college career got eaten up by COVID issues, I started looking at the Fulbright more seriously.”
West, a Terre Haute, Ind., native, is a Benjamin Templeton Scholar double majoring in mathematics and philosophy. Two summer research experiences at the University of Nebraska (summer of 2020 was virtual) allowed West to gain hands-on application determining the safety of rural bridges. West plans to pursue a Juris Doctor upon completing her master’s degree.
“I have loved being at Hanover and a large part of me does not want to leave, but the more I’ve learned about Finnish culture and the more I’ve interacted with everyone involved in Fulbright Finland, the more excited I get for my time at LUT.”
About the Fulbright Program
The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the U.S. and the people of other countries. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments, host institutions, corporations, and foundations in foreign countries and in the U.S. also provide direct and indirect support. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields. The Program operates in more than 160 countries worldwide.