Third-year student Lorelei Domke is New College’s first recipient of a Freeman-ASIA award for study in China.
The Freeman-ASIA program provides scholarships to American undergraduate students accepted to study abroad programs in China and Southeast Asia.
Domke received the program’s maximum $5,000 award. She also received a $3,000 Gilman Scholarship from the U.S. Department of State to fund her studies.
“This is our very first Freeman, a truly competitive award for all undergraduate students of Asian studies,” said Courtney Hughes, who directed New College’s student fellowships office. “Lorelei is a great student – and I know she’ll be an incredible ambassador for us in China.”
Domke, from Cape Coral, is studying Chinese language and culture at New College. This spring, she will be enrolled in CET’s Beijing intensive language program on the campus of Capital Normal University, with more than 20 hours of coursework per week and cultural trips for the 16-week program.
Domke thanked her “amazing professors,” Dr. Jing Zhang, her academic advisor, and Dr. Fangyu Li, and they returned the praise.
“Lorelei is always pleasant to work with,” Dr. Zhang said. “She has impressed me the most by her great motivation and initiatives in learning and her resourcefulness. I am sure she will thrive in China and bring a lot back to her community here.”
Domke said she was happy the award committees recognized her hard work and determination.
“Thankfully, the Gilman and Freeman-ASIA committee have acknowledged my academic endeavors and awarded me the scholarships necessary to travel to Beijing and immerse myself in Chinese language and culture,” she said. “I hope to expand my insights on what careers are available to me while in China and after graduation.”
She also thanked her mother and her “Omie” – a German nickname for grandmother – for their support: “They have made a huge impact on my life and helped make all of this possible!”
The Freeman-ASIA program is funded by the Freeman Foundation and administered by the Institute of International Education. The program’s goal is to increase the number of U.S. citizens and permanent residents with first-hand exposure to and understanding of Asia and its peoples and cultures.
The State Department’s Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship is a grant program that enables students of limited financial means to study or intern abroad, thereby gaining skills critical to national security and economic competitiveness.