Villanovans Selected as 2012-2013 Fulbright Scholars

Fulbright program is the country’s flagship international education exchange program

ViLLANOVA, Pa. – Five Villanovans have been selected as 2012-2013 Fulbright Scholars—with plans to serve as international cultural ambassadors, continue research opportunities or further their educations through this international education exchange program.

Monica Mazzoli ’11 A&S and John Rafferty, JD, ’12 VLS have been awarded a 2012-2013 Fulbright Full Grant to the United Kingdom and Ecuador, respectively. Fulbright Full Grant candidates pursue independent post-baccalaureate-level research or a graduate degree program. In addition, Nathan Haag ’08 A&S, ’11 MS, was named an alternate for a Fulbright Full Grant to New Zealand.

Hana Lee ’12 A&S, Christopher Muyo ’10 A&S and Weddy Worjroh ’12 A&S have been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship (ETA) to South Korea, Malaysia and Argentina, respectively. An ETA places a Fulbrighter in a classroom abroad to provide assistance to those teaching English to non-native English speakers. An ETA recipient helps teach the English language while serving as a cultural ambassador for the United States.

“Villanova’s Fulbright Scholars have actively sought every opportunity to excel at Villanova as academic leaders. They are exceptional representatives of Villanovans using their gifts to serve the global community,” said Jane Morris, Director of the University’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships.

Monica Mazzoli, of Raleigh, N.C., earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English, graduating summa cum laude from Villanova. She was named a 2011 Falvey Scholar for her research on the work of Lucy Hutchinson, a 17th-century Reformist poet. While at Villanova, Mazzoli was a member of the Student Government Association and volunteered as a Career Advisor for the Career Center and as a tutor for a local high school. She has been working in patient relations at the Duke University Medical Center and has continued her volunteer activities as a mentor for the Wake County Boys and Girls Club. For her Fulbright, Mazzoli will pursue a Master of Arts degree in Renaissance Literature at the University of York. She also plans to continue her research on the works of those who are considered to be lesser known early modern female writers. Upon returning to the United States, Mazzoli hopes to pursue a PhD in English.

John Rafferty, of Devon, Pa., earned a degree in Philosophy at Boston College and worked as a commissioned officer in the U.S. Navy in Japan, California and Bahrain. He earned a full scholarship to attend the Villanova University School of Law as a Public Interest Scholar with the intention of practicing in the area of international human rights. Since returning to the United States, Rafferty has had success in implementing and advocating for stronger anti-trafficking policies and initiatives and arguing for political asylum for victims of domestic violence. While in Ecuador, Rafferty will partner with government agencies and non-government organizations to spread awareness and understanding of Ecuador’s human trafficking policies and laws as well as the challenges facing the prosecution of such crimes. Prior to being named a Fulbright Scholar, he received a 2012 Independence Foundation Public Interest Law Fellowship to work with the Philadelphia-based Friends of Farmworkers. Rafferty will begin representing victims of labor trafficking in Pennsylvania upon his return in 2013.

Hana Lee, of Macungie, Pa., earned dual bachelor’s degrees in Education and Mathematics. In recognition of her academic achievements and community involvement, Lee was a recipient of the Villanova Scholarship and the Luckow Family Scholarship, which is awarded by Villanova’s Education department. During her time at Villanova, she worked with inner-city students and served in a leadership capacity for Villanova’s Korean Students Association. Through her ETA in South Korea, Lee plans to expand her knowledge of Korean culture and foreign educational systems, policies and philosophies. Upon returning to the United States, Lee hopes to pursue a master's degree in Education or Mathematics and teach mathematics at an inner-city high school. Her goal is to utilize her ETA experience to become a culturally competent and effective inner-city teacher.

Christopher Muyo, of Martinez, Calif., earned dual bachelor’s degree in English and Honors from Villanova. The Providence Alliance for Catholic Teachers (PACT), housed at Providence College in Rhode Island, selected Muyo to both serve as a teacher in a New England high school and pursue his graduate studies in Education. Through PACT, Muyo earned a master’s degree in Secondary Education in June 2012. Muyo has had a number of international experiences. Notably, he participated on an international marketing project that took him to Beijing for the 2008 Summer Olympic Games. After completing his Fulbright ETA in Malaysia, Muyo intends to rejoin the teaching force and plans to pursue a graduate program in public policy, educational policy and leadership, or English literature.

Weddy Worjroh, of Monmouth Junction, N.J., earned a bachelor’s degree in Global Interdisciplinary Studies and Sociology with minors in Peace and Justice, and Spanish. She was named a 2011 Harry S. Truman Scholarship finalist and was a 2010 Benjamin A. Gilman Scholar. As a Gilman scholar, Worjroh conducted research in Granada, Spain, focusing on the integration of immigrants, while also serving as a Spanish teacher to recent immigrants in Spain. Worjroh was involved with Villanova’s Amendment One, Amnesty International and Catholic Relief Services’ Ambassadors Immigration. She also interned at Philadelphia’s Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians and the Pennsylvania Immigration and Citizenship Coalition. During her Fulbright ETA, Worjroh plans to volunteer at a worker’s rights organization to learn more about labor practices in Argentina. In order to continue to advocate for the rights of immigrants, she plans to pursue a JD/MSW dual degree, which prepares students for careers where law and social work converge.

About The Fulbright Program: The Fulbright Program, America’s flagship international education exchange program, is sponsored by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program has provided approximately 295,000 Americans the opportunity to exchange ideas and embark on joint ventures of importance to the general welfare of the world’s inhabitants. The Program operates in over 155 countries worldwide. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is administered by the Institute of International Education.

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's five colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing and the Villanova University School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them.