Erin Bourque CSSH’19, a University Scholar and member of the Honors Program, has won a Boren Scholarship to fund a year of study abroad in Kazakhstan. Bourque, an international affairs and political science major from Dover, NH, will complete the Advanced Russian Language and Area Studies Program at the Al-Farabi Kazakh National University in Almaty.
Although only in her second year at Northeastern, Bourque has amassed an impressive record of studying Russian language and culture. When she was a senior in high school, she won a full merit-based scholarship sponsored by the U.S. Department of State to spend two months in Russia. In summer 2015, she received the State Department’s Critical Language Scholarship, which funded immersive language study in Vladimir, Russia. Now, the Boren Scholarship will enable her to spend an entire academic year studying the language, culture, and politics of the region. Bourque is currently on co-op at Northeastern's Kostas Research Institute for Homeland Security, and she hopes eventually to put her knowledge to use as a US Foreign Service officer, an aspiration well aligned with the purpose of the Boren Scholarship.
Boren Scholarships, an initiative of the National Security Education Program, provide unique funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests. Boren Scholars represent a vital pool of highly motivated individuals who wish to work in the federal national security arena. In exchange for funding, Boren Scholars commit to working in the federal government for at least one year after graduation.