Six named Phillips Student Fellows

Bates College students from Maine, Montana, New Jersey, New York state, Kazakhstan and Turkey have been named 2005 Phillips Student Fellows, recipients of an award that provides major funding for summer research projects involving meaningful immersion in different cultures.

Three of the six recipients are sophomores: Ainur Begim, of Aktobe City, Kazakhstan, Jacob Bluestone, of Huntington, N.Y., and Arda Gucler, of Istanbul, Turkey.

The others are juniors: Tyler Paul, of Great Falls, Mont., Vanni Thach, of Camden, N.J., and Chelsea Tryder, of Fryeburg, Maine.

Begim’s project is titled The Study of the Panathenaic Festival, Greece and Great Britain. She will explore social hierarchies of ancient Greece through in-depth study of the Panathenaic Festival. The most important religious festival in ancient Athens, it maintained the ancient Greek social hierarchy through symbolism and ritual. In particular, Begim is interested in the place of women in that hierarchy and how religion shaped their roles and values.

In Athens, Begim will study the ancient sites along the Panathenaic processional way, as well as objects in museum collections. She will also visit the British Museum, London, to study the Elgin Marbles, which depict the Panathenaic procession.

For his project titled The Honesty of Broken Language, Bluestone will spend eight weeks in Cochabamba, Bolivia, volunteering to teach and work with disadvantaged children. An accomplished photographer, Bluestone will document his work and the community. He hopes to supply his students with disposable cameras, teach them about photography and set them off to record life in their neighborhoods.

For The Anzac Soldiers: Faces of War, Australia and New Zealand, Gucler will travel to Australia and New Zealand to interview the families of veterans of the World War I battle of Gallipoli. This conflict between Allied and Ottoman forces in Turkey resulted in appalling casualties on both sides. Gucler will explore how individual soldiers in the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps — the Anzacs — experienced the battle, and will place those experiences in the context of national history and modern views of the battle.

Paul’s project, Exploring Identity and Economic Development in Central Asia, will take him to Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan for eight weeks to study the economic progress and national identity of these former Soviet republics. In home stays in countries along the historic Silk Road, Paul will try to understand the impact of political and economic change on individuals and communities.

Thach’s project, titled Cambodia’s Genocide: Finding Myself in the Killing Fields, will take her to Cambodia to make personal and historical discoveries. Visiting museums, archives, religious sites and the villages of her family, who were displaced after the Vietnam War, Thach will seek to better understand her heritage and will explore the history of Cambodia, especially its recent past and legacy of genocide.

In her project, Accessing the Arts: Hogar Nuestra Señora de la Paz, Chile, Tryder will spend the summer at an orphanage for girls in Santiago, Chile. She will work as a volunteer assisting with the day-to-day activities of the orphanage, teach dance to the girls and create a mural. In addition, as the orphanage is one of a network throughout the city, Tryder will direct an art committee for volunteers from the other orphanages.

Phillips Student Fellowships support students who design exceptional international or cross-cultural projects focusing on research, service-learning, career exploration or a combination of the three. The best Phillips Fellowships are challenging and transformative experiences for the students who undertake them.

The Phillips Student Fellowships, Phillips Faculty Fellowships and Phillips Professorships at Bates are part of the Phillips Endowment Program, an initiative of awards, honors and opportunities funded by a $9 million endowment bequest made to the college in 1999 by Charles F. Phillips, fourth president of Bates, and his wife, Evelyn Minard Phillips.

View Comments