New Scholarship Brings Harvard-Cambridge Total to Four
By Susan Peterson
Every year, a few new Harvard graduates have the distinction of becoming students in Cambridge again. Cambridge, England, that is.
Four seniors have received Harvard-Cambridge Scholarships this year: Ying Qian of Shanghai, China; Julissa Reynoso of the Bronx, N.Y.; Christopher Terrio of Staten Island, N.Y.; and Ethan Tucker of White Plains, N.Y.
They were chosen from a record 124 applicants.
The Harvard-Cambridge Scholars program began shortly after World War I, when the families and classmates of Lt. Charles Henry Fiske III and Lionel de Jersey Harvard established scholarships to Trinity and Emmanuel colleges in Cambridge as memorials to the two students who died in the war.
Traditionally, two scholars have been chosen, and three years ago an award was added at Jesus College for the John Eliot Scholar. This year, another scholarship was established for a fourth student who will study at Pembroke College through the auspices of the American Friends of Cambridge University, an organization that wanted to fund a scholarship and knew of Harvard's rigorous selection process.
"I am very pleased that this extraordinarily interesting and diverse group of students will be representing Harvard in Cambridge next year," said Harry R. Lewis, Dean of Harvard College, "and I am also very grateful to the American Friends of Cambridge for creating a fourth scholarship opportunity for our students."
Robert Shapiro, a longtime member of the selection committee and a former Fiske Scholar, said the Cambridge Scholars program seeks students who have varied interests and who will serve as ambassadors from Harvard.
"We have no particular model," Shapiro said. "The four new scholars reflect the vast range of backgrounds, talents, and interests that gather at Harvard today."
Next year, as Pembroke College celebrates its 650th anniversary, Ethan Tucker will be there as part of a new chapter in the college's -- and Harvard's -- history.
As the first Harvard-American Friends of Cambridge Scholar, he plans to further his interest in religious freedom and expression by pursuing a diploma in theology.
"The fellowship process is very long, and I feel incredibly lucky that I've been granted this opportunity," Tucker explained. "I've had very little opportunity in the past to travel abroad, and the idea of spending a full year in Cambridge is more than I could hope for."
Tucker, who lives in Eliot House, is a history and science concentrator and will be considering his career direction during his year in Cambridge. "I've toyed with the idea of law school and the rabbinate," he said.
In his application essay, Tucker describes a vigil for peace conducted by Hillel students and the Society of Arab Students on Widener Library's steps in the fall of 1995. "My involvement with Hillel carried a clear message: that religiously minded citizens have the power to build goodwill and community. Never had that simple point been so obvious to me; never had I felt so fulfilled by an activity in which I had invested, and continue to invest, so much time."
For Ying Qian, studying in Cambridge offers an opportunity to compare economic development in Europe, the U.S., and in her native China.
"By coming to America and going to England, I aspire to understand both differences [between those countries and China] and reflect on the destination of China," wrote Ying Qian in her application essay.
The applied mathematics concentrator from Cabot House looks forward to a career as an economist and educator, with the eventual goal of establishing a liberal arts college in China. As part of that vision, she is writing her honors thesis on "College Financial Aid and Its Implicit Asset Tax."
Qian will be the Fiske Scholar at Trinity College in Cambridge.
Julissa Reynoso, of Adams House, is interested in public policy and development, and she hopes someday to teach at the graduate level and work for a government agency, either in the U.S. or abroad.
A native of the Dominican Republic, the 1997 Lionel de Jersey Harvard Scholar will be pursuing a master's of philosophy in development studies at Emmanuel College.
Reynoso is a government concentrator who is also working toward a certificate in Latin American studies, with the goal of completing a Ph.D. in political science or political economy in the future.
Reynoso's interest in serving others was inspired by watching her great-grandmother heal and teach townspeople in the small town, or pueblo, in the Dominican Republic where Reynoso lived until age 7.
"I still adhere to the principles my pueblo instilled in me as a young girl," she wrote. "I believe that to serve is to be human, but to serve well one must first possess understanding."
An aspiring writer, Christopher Terrio, of Adams House, has been named the John Eliot Scholarship recipient at Jesus College, where he plans to pursue studies in modernist literature -- expanding what he has begun to study at Harvard and incorporate in his senior thesis.
Terrio is an English and American literature concentrator who hopes to pursue a career in writing and possibly a Ph.D.
"The real and the really false, make-believe and belief-made, were distinctions which held no meaning for me as a boy," Terrio wrote in his application essay. "In college, my academic passion has been, through literature, to explore those processes which construct and re-make our experience of the actual world."
Copyright 1998 President and Fellows of Harvard College