Eight undergraduates selected as UNC Phillips Ambassadors for study in Asia

Eight Carolina undergraduates will study abroad in Asia during the spring 2014 semester. From left, standing, pictured with Ambassaodr and Mrs. Phillips: Kim Phillips, Martin Levy, Spencer Nelson, James Williams, Yanshuo Wu, Phil Phillips. Seated, Sarah Heywood, Matt Coss, Larry Han, Rika Ri.

Eight undergraduates from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have been selected as Phillips Ambassadors for spring 2014 study abroad programs in Asia. Six scholarship recipients will study in China, one student will study in Singapore, and one will study in Thailand.

Phillips Ambassadors are selected twice a year and receive up to $7,500 each for a semester or year-long program and up to $5,000 each for a summer program. Recipients are selected for academic achievement and commitment to activities, service and leadership roles in the classroom and community.

Since the Phillips Ambassadors Program began in 2007, it has sent 191 undergraduates to Asia, including this cohort. Twenty-five percent of the scholarships are reserved for qualified undergraduate business majors and minors from Kenan-Flagler Business School. The ambassadors choose from more than 50 UNC-approved academic programs in Asia that are offered by the College of Arts and Sciences and Kenan-Flagler.

The Phillips Ambassadors Program includes a three-credit academic course that puts the experience in global context and challenges students to share their experiences of Asia upon their return.

The program emphasizes what is called “Give Back,” requiring the ambassadors share their study abroad experiences with the Carolina community and their hometowns. In accepting the scholarship, a student agrees to give back to their UNC or hometown community is some way. Students have found many ways to fulfill the give back requirement, ranging from classroom presentations at local high schools, to musical performances inspired by their study abroad experience, to engaging social media to help better spread the word about this exciting scholarship opportunity.

Earl N. “Phil” Phillips Jr., who graduated from UNC with a business administration degree 1962, established an endowment to support the program to generate greater interest in Asia among UNC undergraduates. Phillips has worked and traveled in Asia for more than 20 years and is a former U.S. ambassador to the eastern Caribbean.

“Our goal with this gift has been to encourage more students to spend their study abroad experiences focused on Asia — an increasingly vital region of the future,” said Phillips, an entrepreneur who splits his time between High Point and Chapel Hill.

Website: http://phillips.studyabroad.unc.edu

The new Phillips Ambassadors are listed below alphabetically by North Carolina county, followed by out of state recipients.

NORTH CAROLINA RECIPIENTS

Chatham

Spencer Nelson of Pittsboro will study through the UNC Institute for the Environment, Thailand Field Site in Energy and Environment. He is majoring in biology and environmental science with a minor in Asian studies.

Mecklenburg 

Matt Coss of Huntersville will study through CET Beijing. CET Academic Programs is a study abroad organization based in Washington, D.C. He is majoring in Asian studies and romance languages and literatures with a minor in entrepreneurship.

Rika Ri of Charlotte will study through CET Beijing. CET Academic Programs is a study abroad organization based in Washington, D.C. She is majoring in Asian studies and biology.

Wake

Larry Han of Raleigh will study through the National University of Singapore Honors Exchange Program. He is majoring in chemistry. 

OUT-OF-STATE RECIPIENTS

Florida

Martin Levy of Miami will study at The University of Hong Kong. He is majoring in political science.

Massachusetts

James Williams of North Andover will study through CET Harbin. CET Academic Programs is a study abroad organization based in Washington, D.C. He is majoring in Asian studies and mathematical decision sciences with a minor in economics, philosophy and politics.

Wisconsin

Sarah Heywood of Neenah, will study through CET Beijing. CET Academic Programs is a study abroad organization based in Washington, D.C. She is majoring in Asian studies and environmental health science, with a minor in chemistry.

INTERNATIONAL RECIPIENTS

China

Yanshuo Wu of Tianjin will study through the Chinese University of Hong Kong. She is a global studies and psychology major with a minor in business administration.

 

Phillips Ambassadors contact: Janet Walters, (919) 801-8283, janet_walters@unc.edu

UNC Global contact: Katie Bowler, (919) 962-4504, kbowler@unc.edu