UW-Madison Russian Flagship Program awards 27 scholarships

The Russian Flagship Program at the University of Wisconsin–Madison has received more than $265,000 for student scholarships from the National Security Education Program in the U.S. Department of Defense to support intensive language study in Russia and at UW–Madison during the summer 2014 and the 2014-15 academic year.

This is in addition to $160,000 in Boren Scholarships awarded to individuals in the Russian Flagship Program, which is a rigorous program for highly motivated undergraduates in any major to achieve a professional level of competence in Russian.

The Russian Flagship Program used these funds to award scholarships to 27 UW–Madison students:

  • Twelve will participate in the capstone experience, the Russian Overseas Flagship programat Saint Petersburg State University in Russia during the 2014-15 academic year.
  • Nine will be studying this summer in Moscow, Saint Petersburg, or Vladimir, Russia.
  • Six will enroll in intensive Russian programs at UW–Madison or one of three other U.S. universities with a Russian Flagship Program.

The summer and the academic year programs in Russia are run by American Councils for International Education.

Maria Vishnevsky, a scholarship recipient from Burlington, Vt., says that the opportunity to learn the Russian language was a critical factor in her decision to attend UW–Madison. Vishnevsky, who is majoring in political science and Russian, will be participating next year in the capstone program in St. Petersburg, Russia.

Maria Vishnevsky
Maria Vishnevsky

She is especially excited about the professional internship offered to all capstone participants in St. Petersburg. She is hoping for an internship related to global development and human rights.

Through the Russian Flagship Program, Vishnevsky has had opportunities to speak with renowned human rights advocates, in Russian, to prepare for this exciting professional experience.

She intends to use her Russian language skills in pursuing a career with the World Bank or other global financial institution.

In addition to the scholarships through the Russian Flagship Program, eight Russian Flagship students participating in the capstone program in St. Petersburg 2014-15 have been awarded the highly competitive Boren Scholarship. [See related article on Boren recipients]

Boren Scholarships provide American undergraduates with awards of up to $20,000 to study in countries deemed critical to the future security and stability of the United States. In exchange for funding, Boren recipients agree to work for at least one year in a federal government position with national security responsibilities.

The UW–Madison Russian Flagship is an initiative of the Department of Slavic Languages and Literature and the Language Institute, with the Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia (CREECA) and the Doctoral Program in Second Language Acquisition.

For more information, visit the Russian Flagship Program website, or contact Laura Weigel, at leweigel@wisc.edu.