DURHAM, N.H. – Four students from the University of New Hampshire have received prestigious Fulbright Scholarships that will provide them support to conduct research abroad during the 2010-2011 academic year.
The students are Tyler King, UNH ’10, of Alton; Bethany Wakeman, UNH ’10, of Barrington; Kristina Reardon, UNH G’11, of Uxbridge, Mass.; and Sarah Stickney, UNH G’10, Santa Fe, NM.
Each year, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program awards grants to exceptional American students for study in more than 140 countries.
King will study and conduct research in Trondheim, Norway. He will pursue full-time study in advanced hydrology at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim. He also will conduct directed research with the Center for Environmental Designed of Renewable Energy and will focus on modeling environmental effects of hydroelectric dams.
“In Norway, a balance has been achieved between water resources and water demands; a parity that is maintained through vigilance, engineering, and a national mentality that values water resources. The Norwegian approach to managing water and energy allows that country to produce ninety-nine percent of their electricity through hydroelectric power plants without detriment to the surrounding environments – a feat that is unrivaled in the rest of the world,” King says.
King will receive his bachelor’s in environmental science from UNH in May. He is a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Hollings Scholar and recipient of the Sidney and Kathleen Samuels Scholarship for scholastic excellence and the J & R Mendelsohn Kurtz Scholarship for scholastic excellence. He also is a member of the University Honors Program.
While at UNH, King has pursued a number of water resource management projects, including two months of geophysical groundwater exploration in Virginia, a year of statistical analysis of Siberian runoff data through the Water Systems Analysis Group at UNH, and two months of river temperature modeling with NOAA at their river forecast center in Anchorage, Alaska.
A graduating senior, Wakeman will teach English in Macau. Before coming to UNH, Wakeman spent eight weeks in Thailand as a volunteer, working at orphanages, laying a foundation for a communal home in a leper colony, and serving as an assistant at an English language camp.
“This opportunity to be immersed in Thai culture made a significant impact on me and my view of the world,” Wakeman says. “I realized that I wanted to understand about cultures and languages other than my own.”
While at UNH, Wakeman was a member of the University Honors Program and the 2009 UNH Wildcat Leadership Program. She completed a bachelor’s in psychology and minors in philosophy and Asian studies. Her academic interests led her to course work in Mandarin Chinese language, Asian religion and philosophy, cultural psychology, and on the influence of China on Western media, and to do a research project on Buddhism. She also served as an English “language partner” for a student from China.
Following her Fulbright experience in Macau, Wakeman plans to pursue a master’s in social work. “I hope to become a counselor working with clients from diverse backgrounds,” Wakeman says. “Here in New Hampshire there is a growing Asian population, which the U.S. Census Bureau currently places at 1.9 percent or about 25,000 people.”
Reardon will conduct research in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Her project is titled “Two Decades Later: Translating Women’s Fiction Since Slovenian Independence.” She will spend the year working with Nike Pokorn at the University of Ljubljana translating a volume of short fiction written by women since Slovenia declared independence in the early 1990s. Through the process of translation, her goal will be able to identify and analyze the way Slovenian nationalism has created a unique literary identity for contemporary women writers in Slovenia over the past two decades.
“While the Slovenian language is spoken by only two million people worldwide,” says Reardon, “within the country, the language is a source of pride and provides a sense of unity. Perhaps more than political opinions, the Slovenian language is credited as being the cultural glue that kept Slovenians together as the nation broke away from the former Republic of Yugoslavia. Therefore, Slovenian fiction writers are charged with two important tasks: to preserve the language and to use their narratives to keep stories and histories of Slovenian culture alive.”
The few anthologies of Slovenian literature that do exist in English largely contain the work of male writers. “The Veiled Landscape,” a published volume of women’s fiction and poetry that was translated into English, had a small print run, is not widely available in English-speaking countries, and was published in 1995, only a few years after independence. Therefore, Reardon’s project will fill a void in scholarship.
Reardon will graduate from UNH in 2011 with a master’s degree in fiction writing. While an undergraduate student at Providence College, Reardon won English department prizes for her prose poetry and fiction writing, as well as awards for essay writing and excellence in English literature. She is published in The Newport Review, the Encyclopedia of Contemporary Fiction, Rhode Island Monthly, and the Stonebridge Press.
Stickney will conduct research in Bologna, Italy. Through her Fulbright project, “The Translation and Study of Immigrant Poets in Italy,” Stickney will study the new movement of immigrant writers who are producing literature in Italian. She will spend the year working with Albanian poet Gezim Hajdari, winner of the prestigious Montale Prize, and with editors of the University of Bologna’s Scritture Migranti, a publication devoted to disseminating the works of immigrant writers.
According to Stickney, immigration laws seemed to have encouraged relocation to Italy during the last 20 years. “Many of the immigrants come from Africa, many from Albania, and some from as far away as Brazil and Palestine,” Stickney says. “The first writing these men and women produced was largely autobiographical, and often required the help of Italian translators. The high quality of these first narratives sparked an interest that encouraged the writers to learn Italian.”
Stickney explains that since some of these first generation immigrant writers pushed themselves to learn the language and to write in Italian, “they write from two traditions and two perspectives. Their poetry exists in a particularly rich arena of language and thought. This work is not only contemporary and influential, it speaks to all people.”
Fluent in Italian, Stickney says her task will be “to cull and translate a representative selection of their poems, which I will publish in the United States. I am interested in the unique culture that these writers have created. An educated, motivated group of artists, they have convened to work and communicate in a language that is no member’s mother tongue. They represent a fascinating moment in the history of world literature, and I want to record it.”
Stickney will graduate from UNH this month with a master’s in poetry writing. While at UNH, Stickney won the 2007 Anne Pazo Mayberry Award for Poetry, the 2009 Dick Shea Memorial Poetry Prize, and the Young Dawkins III award for the best thesis. Her work appeared recently in two publications, Lament and Scarab Magazine. In 2009, Stickney also received the Award in Teaching Excellence from the University of New Hampshire Graduate School.
The University of New Hampshire, founded in 1866, is a world-class public research university with the feel of a New England liberal arts college. A land, sea, and space-grant university, UNH is the state's flagship public institution, enrolling more than 12,200 undergraduate and 2,200 graduate students.