Three A&S Students Earn Scholarship for Study Abroad in South Africa

by Colleen Glenn
photos by Brian Connors Manke

Thanks to the University of Kentucky Women and Philanthropy Network, three students will be traveling to South Africa this summer. Krista Osmundson, Joseph Mann, and Zach Rose will travel to Capetown May 18 for a two-month study and work abroad trip. The journey marks the culmination of UK Arts & Sciences year-long initiative with South Africa.

While in Capetown, the students will intern at various non-governmental organizations and bring their skills and assets to the South African organizations. They will also take a course on South African politics and history in order to better understand the challenges the NGOs face. One of their most memorable experiences will surely be their tour of Robben Island, where Nelson Mandela was incarcerated for 27 years.

Eddie Daniels, a former political prisoner who also imprisoned at Robben Island at the same time as Mandela, will meet and talk with the students. For some of the students, Daniels will be a familiar face: he came to UK last fall as one of the honorees of Arts & Sciences South Africa program. The students will also tour the townships, which were areas where blacks were segregated from whites during the time of apartheid.

The students are eager for the trip and say they cannot wait to go.

Krista Osmundson, a senior from Union, Kentucky, is excited about the adventure that awaits her.
“As a history major and political science minor, I cannot wait to explore the country and experience firsthand all I have learned in the classroom about the country,” said Osmundson. “Interning for a non-governmental human rights organization, I hope to gain valuable new insight into the culture and the struggles facing South Africans.”

A junior majoring in psychology from Danville, Kentucky, Joseph Mann has extensive professional experience as a web-designer; he has owned and managed his own technical services and networking company already for many years. His skills as a web designer are particularly sought-after by the non-profit organizations in Cape Town who are sponsoring the summer internships.

Mann credits A&S 100, “Kentucky & South Africa, Different Lands, Common Ground,” as the UK course that piqued his interest in South Africa. “The class brought to my attention certain instances of human rights disparities that exist throughout the present world,” stated Mann. “In Capetown, I will be engaging in networking and designing web sites, orchestrating social media networks, and providing technical support to the NGO, which is exactly what I do currently in Kentucky.”

Zach Rose, a senior from Alexandria, Kentucky, is majoring in political science with a minor in geography.

“This will be my first time going abroad so it will surely be an amazing experience and a lasting memory,” said Rose. “I hope that my efforts, while working for an NGO in South Africa, will have an impact on even just one person: to me that would be a successful trip.”

The funds offered by the UK’s Women and Philanthropy Network will cover a significant portion of the cost of Osmundson’s, Mann’s, and Rose’s trip. “When I found out that I was selected for this amazing scholarship I actually cheered out loud,” said Rose.

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