VILLANOVA, Pa. – Villanova University student, Karolina Wolnicki ’15, a junior in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, has been named a recipient of a 2013 National Security Education Program (NSEP) David L. Boren Scholarship, marking the third consecutive year that a Villanova student has won this competitive award and the second Villanova student to win the scholarship this year alone. Wolnicki, from Ardmore, Pa., plans to use her scholarship to pursue Portuguese language studies at the Council of International Educational Exchange’s program in Salvador da Bahia, Brazil during the spring 2014 semester.
Established in 1994, Boren Scholarships are funded by the NSEP and provide unique funding opportunities for American undergraduate and graduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions that are critical to the United States’ interests and are underrepresented in study abroad. These include countries in Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. In exchange for funding, Boren award recipients agree to work for at least one year in a federal government position with national security responsibilities after their college graduation. The Departments of Defense, Homeland Security, State, or any element of the Intelligence Community are priority agencies.
“We are delighted that Karolina was awarded the Boren Scholarship to study Portuguese in Brazil,” said Jane Morris, Director of the University’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships. “She will be joining Nicholas Bailes, Michael McKenzie, and Shannon Welch who will be in Brazil through Fulbright grants. We are proud of Karolina's accomplishment.”
Wolnicki is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Spanish and Global Interdisciplinary Studies with a minor in Arabic. Fluent in both Polish and English, Wolnicki has demonstrated a commitment to learning multiple languages, including Spanish, Arabic and French, through her coursework and co-curricular activities. She has served as an official interpreter for the College of Nursing and the College of Engineering’s Telehealth Project in Waslala, Nicaragua and has traveled to Nicaragua five times to aid in health training in this role. She has also traveled to Guatemala, El Salvador, and Chile for service trips. During the summer of 2010, she studied Arabic in El Jadida, Morocco as part of the National Security Language Initiative for Youth program, and as a junior in high school she completed a 10-month study abroad program in Badajoz, Spain.
On campus at Villanova, Wolnicki is a member of the Equestrian Club and she serves as a Spanish interpreter for Villanova’s Law School Clinic, where she supports Hispanic immigrants. She is an ambassador for Catholic Relief Services and has taught English to non-English speaking immigrants at the National Service Center in Philadelphia. Upon graduating from Villanova, Wolnicki plans to pursue a career in international affairs through the Foreign Service.
In addition to Wolnicki, Christine Fossaceca ’16 College of Engineering was also named a Boren Scholarship winner in May and will use her scholarship to pursue Korean language studies and computer engineering at Yonsei University in Seoul, South Korea during the spring 2014 semester.
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.