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Reed students awarded internships

Eight students to link academic studies with community engagement from Portland to Africa through internships this summer

PORTLAND, OR (April 14, 2006) – Reed College has named eight students as recipients of McGill Lawrence and Reed Environmental Activism Fund (REAF) internships. Lindsey Maser, Elena McGrath, Kim Thien Nguyen, Aurora Paulsen, Cait Quinlivan, Dan Walker, Stephen Wissow and Amanda Ufheil-Somers have been chosen to participate in summer internships that will allow them to augment their studies as they lend a hand in local communities from Portland to Africa.

McGill Lawrence Internship Award
McGrath, Nguyen, Paulsen, Quinlivan, Walker and Wissow were announced as 2006 recipients of McGill Lawrence internships. Originally established to cultivate an understanding of multicultural issues, the internship awards at least 50 percent of its funds to proposals that bring students into contact with ethnically and culturally diverse issues and populations. McGrath, whose hometown is Littleton, CO, is taking that theme to another level. Working in LaPaz, Bolivia, with Boulder, CO-based Landlocked Films on a documentary tentatively entitled "Letters to North America,"McGrath, a senior majoring in History, will be interning in a culturally diverse setting as well as addressing issues surrounding globalization in the subject of the film on which she'll be working.

Paulsen, Walker and Wissow are traveling to Africa to serve with organizations focused on wildlife conservation, food supply and agriculture in developing countries. Paulsen, who is from Bigfork, MT, will be an intern with SANCCOB, the Southern African Foundation for the Conservation of Coastal Birds, in Cape Town, South Africa. Working with SANCCOB, a nonprofit organization specializing in the care and rehabilitation of indigenous injured, ill and oiled seabirds, will allow Paulsen, a junior, the opportunity to care for and raise African Penguin chicks, a species that is in great decline.

As a biotechnology research assistant with the International Livestock Research Institute, based in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Walker will be helping to develop new products and tools that can mitigate threats to livestock in developing countries. Walker, a junior majoring in Biology from Guilford, CT, will be working in an active biotechnology research environment, assisting the institute as it works to reduce family poverty and food insecurity by ensuring access to affordable, nutritional and sustainable food supplies.

Wissow, an English major and junior at Reed, will be traveling from his hometown of Baltimore, MD, to intern in southern Chad with the Department of International Health, Johns Hopkins University. "The McGill Lawrence internship is giving me an opportunity to participate in a soil study to develop recommendations to local farmers on best practices," says Wissow, "helping the village of Ngalaba to make the most of the available fields since recent pipeline development has disrupted agriculture."

Both Quinlivan, from Sioux Falls, SD, and Nguyen, from Citrus Heights, CA, will be interning in the US: Quinlivan, a freshman, will work with the Youth and AIDS project in Minneapolis, MN, and Nguyen, a junior majoring in Economics, will serve as an Accredited Representative at Portland's Immigration Legal Services Branch of the Catholic Charities Organization, where she worked last summer as a legal intern. At nineteen, Nguyen may be the youngest Accredited Representative in the history of immigration law.

The endowment for the McGill Lawrence internships has increased in recent years through generous contributions from the student body. Award amounts are based on need, with up to $1,750 awarded per person for eight weeks of full-time work.

Reed Environmental Activism Fund
The Reed Environmental Activism Fund (REAF), made possible by the Nicholas Lovejoy Fund, recognizes Reed students with longstanding commitments to environmental activism. Selected students participate in internships related to their activism that complement their academic studies, with a focus on creating systematic change toward an environmentally sustainable society.

Organic farming, part of a larger movement toward sustainable living, has attracted Maser, one of two 2006 REAF recipients. Joining the Italian chapter of Willing Working on Organic Farms, Maser, a junior from Portland who is majoring in Art, will travel to Italy to learn about organic farming practices while contributing to a local organic farming community. Ufheil-Somers, a second recipient whose hometown is Campbell, CA, will be working with the Portland Peace and Justice Center, which coordinates service-oriented bicycle tours that visit organic farms, EcoVillages, community schools and other sites in Oregon and Washington that employ innovative sustainable-living practices. Ufheil-Somers, a sophomore, will be helping to coordinate this traveling community of cyclists as they explore some of the most beautiful places in Oregon while learning about natural history, ecology and environmental ethics. She will also help to develop and organize a new tour of Portland-based green businesses and nonprofits intended to support the transformation of an empty lot into a new public park.

Award amounts for 2006 will be $1,500 for 8 weeks of full-time engagement.