Alanna Flynn is Memorial University’s latest recipient of a Killam Fellowship, a prestigious study-abroad program that offers Canadian students a chance to study in the United States.
The St. John’s resident is currently completing an honours degree in Physics with a minor in math. She will spend three months this spring at the University of Seattle in Washington.
The Killam Fellowships Program allows undergraduate students from Canada and the United States to participate in a program of bi-national residential exchange. Killam Fellows spend either one semester or a full academic year as an exchange student in the host country.
“University of Washington has quarters, rather than semesters,” she explains. “So it doesn’t line up perfectly with what we have here, but I’ll be there from March to June.
“Before I go, I will be doing one course and finishing my thesis from January to March – kind of a condensed semester. Since a couple of the courses I will be doing in Seattle will count towards my degree requirements, I won’t technically attend convocation until October.”
To be chosen for the fellowship, students at participating institutions can first apply to their home university, which then puts forth its top applicants to a national selection committee. While this direct exchange program is limited to the participating university partners, students can also apply to the open competition, which allows for participation from and to any accredited degree granting college or university in either country.
“I have been living in St. John’s my whole life and the Killiam Fellowship is a great opportunity,” said Ms. Flynn. “It is the perfect chance to broaden my educational horizons and get a different perspective. That’s really the point of the program, to foster cooperation between Canada and the US.
The program, administered by Fulbright Canada, is an integral part of the Foundation's multidimensional strategy to foster mutual understanding between Canada and the United States of America and is designed to encourage exceptional undergraduate students in the two countries by providing a unique opportunity for academic exchange.
As part of her fellowship, Ms. Flynn will receive a cash award of $5,000 US, a $500 allowance to offset health insurance costs and she can apply for an $800 mobility grant, which would allow her to take an educational field trip in her host country. She has just attended a three day orientation session in Ottawa, and will attend another one in Washington, DC in April.
Only 18 scholarships were available for 2010-11 for Canada and the United States.