AWC Scholarship Award 2017

2017 is a Scholarship award year! Three years have passed since Mette Frederiksen became the recipient of our last scholarship award. You can read more about Mette's graduation below.

The AWC Scholarship is to be given to a Danish woman who will pursue her graduate study in the US for at least 6 months.  Applications from members and their daughters (or granddaughters) will be taken into special consideration. The application deadline is in late April and the award ceremony will be in June. Full information on how to apply will be posted on our website very shortly.

This year’s committee members, so far, are Michelle Pøhls, Cyntheia Singleton, Ditte Lisbjerg and Clarice Scott. If you are interested in joining the committee please contact Ditte at scholarship@awcdenmark.org. 

Click here for the 2017 "Scholarship Letter"

Click here for the 2017 "Scholarship Application Form"

 

AWC Scholarship Award 2014

President Clarice Scott presenting Mette Frederiksen with her Scholarship Award 2014
To their right are Ditte Lisbjerg and Cyntheia Singleton from the Scholarship Committee

Letter from Mette Frederiksen on graduation from Columbia NY 2016

Dear American Women’s Club in Denmark,

Last month I had the incredible experience of sitting in a beautiful ocean of light blue cap and gowns on a lovely summer day, while listening to the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, speak at our commencement ceremony at Columbia. It was a wonderful experience, which finalized an amazing chapter in my life; studying at Columbia and living in New York City for almost two years.

I finished my degree at Columbia by writing a thesis throughout the fall semester, while also interning at one of the country missions to the United Nations. It was a great experience to get to participate in meetings in the UN with representatives from countries from all over the world, and gain some valuable insight to how the UN system works. I decided to stay in New York after completing my thesis to explore job opportunities over here, so right after finishing my degree I started an internship at Columbia Law School Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, where I did research for a project on implementation of climate change adaptation in federal management decision. I have just started writing for a website/knowledge platform on sustainability and human rights issues, and started working as a research assistant for a small organization called Ocean Guardian, where I will be doing research on international and U.S. policy and treaties on fisheries, ocean protection, and slave labor. This summer I will also be working for an organization that runs sustainability and environmental leadership summer programs for high school students. The program I will be teaching at is located at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, and I am very excited to be working with a group of motivated young students, and apply some of all that theory I have been spending almost all by awaken hours on, for the past semesters at Columbia.

photo (7).JPGNot only have I learned a lot during my time at Columbia—at times I didn’t think it would be possible for my brain to take in any more knowledge--but  especially my thesis research has also motivated me to pursue further work on the topics I’ve studied. Going in to the human rights program I didn’t know my studies would develop into having a big focus on environmental issues, but while reading and writing about economic and social rights, international environmental policy, U.S. climate change policy, and investment treaties, among others issues, it became clear to me that working to prevent environmental pollution is where my passion lies.

I am currently looking into relocation to California in the fall, preferably San Francisco, where many environmental and social justice organizations are based, as well I will be applying to a PhD program at Berkeley Law School. I am hoping to be accepted into their program in Jurisprudence and Social Policy, with a specialization in law and environmental health, since I am very interested in continuing my research on impacts and regulation of environmental pollution. I know it will not be easy to get in to the program, but I have had a great thesis advisor who is supporting me in the application process. And, if there is anything I have learned from applying to Columbia, and making it through the entire program, it is that it is possible, if you set your mind to it and work hard.

Thanks again for believing in me! Not only has the AWC scholarship been a great financial support, but moreover, by awarding me the scholarship, you were also one of the first to tell me that you believed in me, too.
I hope you will all have a great summer.

Best regards, Mette

A Scholarship Award of 5,000 DKK was given to Anne Berg Villumsen in 2011.

Follow-up news from Anne Berg Villumsen in May 2013

The summer of 2011 AWC generously awarded me a grant for my graduate studies in Public Health at UC Berkeley. When leaving for California that summer I had never expected that my journey would be so long and so influential – personally as well as professionally.

During my coursework at Berkeley I found great interest in family planning, reproductive rights and female empowerment. I couldn’t believe my luck when an American Doctoral student invited me to join her research on birth control. In collaboration we went to North India last summer and interviewed 52 impoverished women about their reproductive choices. Hence, instead of finishing my degree in Copenhagen as originally planned, I returned to Berkeley the following fall of 2012 to write my Master’s Thesis based on the Indian women’s remarkable stories. This April, I finally moved back to Denmark and wrapped up my studies in Public Health Science from University of Copenhagen.

However, this isn’t the end of my UC Berkeley adventure. The experiences of the Indian women, made me realize the constraints within which these women navigate their lives. In a context where women often seem to live within households with no decision making power, and where experts incentivize them to use certain kinds of birth control, “contraceptive choice” seems a hollow concept. As such, I don’t think women “need” birth control per se; rather they need the power to decide what to do with their own bodies. With this newfound understanding my Californian research partner and I are returning to India this May to continue our work.

Thank you for having supported the beginning of such amazing journey. It ain’t over yet!

Truly,
Anne B. Villumsen

Photos that Anne has kindly supplied taken in India during her stay of work there

Field Interview: In Uttar Pradesh, India, during one of the home visits to conduct interviews with married women about contraceptive use and access to family planning.

Health Provider: In Uttar Pradesh, India, at a local tele-medicine health center operated by a married couple from the community supported by web-camera consultations with doctors in Delhi – a strategy to reach the remote areas with quality reproductive health care.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
   
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