Centre College students are known for continuing academic and personal excellence after graduating, and Bethany Carson ’13 is certainly living up to that reputation: she has been awarded a 2014 Humanity in Action Fellowship, one of 40 such positions for which over 600 applicants vied.
The Humanity in Action Fellowship allows international groups of college students and recent graduates to examine various national histories of discrimination and resistance to injustice, as well as examples of contemporary issues affecting minority groups. The program is designed to promote engaged citizenship, responsible decision-making and minority and human rights.
Humanity in Action Fellowships are extremely competitive, requiring high academic standing, academic participation in human rights issues and outstanding recommendations.
“We are so thrilled to have Bethany as a new member of the Humanity in Action network,” says Pamela Rykowski, director of communications and administration for the Humanity in Action network.
The 2014 Fellows will participate in an orientation workshop at the Council on Foreign Relations and the United States Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., from May 26 – 29. Topics covered include American civil rights, Holocaust education and European security and political issues, as well how to build careers in foreign affairs.
Following the orientation, Fellows will travel to one of five European cities, including Amsterdam, Berlin, Copenhagen, Paris or Warsaw, until June 29. Once there, they will join students and recent graduates from universities in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, the Netherlands, Poland, Turkey and Ukraine who are also participating in the program.
The Fellowship concludes with an international conference in the border region between Germany and Denmark, June 26 – 29.
Carson is certainly equipped to excel during the fellowship, thanks to her experiences at Centre. She was among the College’s first class of Brown Fellows, a prestigious full-ride-plus scholarship program launched in partnership with the James Graham Brown Foundation. With a double major in government and Spanish, Carson graduated Phi Beta Kappa and received several prizes and awards for her work as a student leader, including her involvement in CentrePeace, a social justice group on campus. Her time abroad in Mérida, Mexico, with the Centre-in-the-Yucatan study abroad program also expanded her global citizenship and international perspective, both of which will be invaluable to her fellowship experience.
Beyond Centre, Carson has studied and volunteered extensively throughout Latin America, including a delegation with the nonprofit Witness for Peace investigating the implementation of the Labor Action Plan corollary to the U.S.–Colombia Free Trade Agreement. At home, Bethany is an advocate for Latino immigrants, volunteering at citizenship and deferred action clinics, mentoring immigrant children, and raising awareness about the effects of current immigration policy.
After concluding her current position teaching English in rural Costa Rica, Bethany plans to pursue work at a non-governmental organization advocating for just immigration, labor or trade policy.
“We have never had a more diverse and talented applicant pool,” says Dr. Judith Goldstein, Humanity in Action’s Executive Director and Founder. “These young leaders are dynamic, entrepreneurial and passionate about changing the world. We are so thrilled to welcome them to the Humanity in Action network.”
Carson follows fellow Centre graduate Sam Yates ’11, who received the same fellowship in 2013.
Humanity in Action is an international education organization that educates, inspires and connects a global network of students, young professionals and established leaders committed to promoting human rights, diversity and active citizenship—in their own communities and around the world. Learn more by visiting the Humanity in Action website.
By Mariel Smith