Marcelo Ostria, a UNT Honors College graduate, is one of 160 finalists in the U.S. for 2012 Marshall Scholarships. Ostria received his bachelor's degree in international studies in May 2011, after receiving his bachelor's degree in political science in December 2010.
Considered to be among the most prestigious postgraduate scholarships available to Americans who have recently received bachelor's degrees, the Marshall Scholarships fund two full years of study at any university in the United Kingdom. The scholarships vary in amount and cover university fees and living expenses, as well as provide funds for books, thesis study and research, and travel to and from the United Kingdom. No more than 40 applicants are selected for the scholarships each year.
Applicants for the Marshall Scholarships cannot have received their first undergraduate degrees from U.S. colleges and universities more than two years before applying, and must have received their degrees with grade point averages of 3.7 or higher. Nearly 1,000 students applied for the scholarships in 2010, with those selected representing approximately 4 percent of the applicants.
Twenty Marshall finalists are each selected from eight regions in October and interview with their region's selection committee in November. The finalists are assigned to a regional committee by the location of their hometowns.
Marshall Scholarship winners are selected for their potential to excel as scholars and leaders and as contributors to improved understanding between the U.S. and the United Kingdom.
In applying for the scholarship, Ostria received guidance from UNT's Marshall Scholarship Nominating and Mentoring Committee. Ostria being named a finalist "is an immense honor for both Marcelo and for UNT," says James Duban, director of UNT's Office for Nationally Competitive Scholarships. Duban also serves on the Marshall Scholarship Nominating and Mentoring Committee.
"Only a small fraction of the nation's very best students ever make it to the finalist stage of Marshall Scholarship competition. That accomplishment speaks volumes about Marcelo, about his humanitarian outreach, and about the quality of his UNT education," Duban says.
Ostria plans to study at Oxford University if he receives the scholarship, enrolling in the master's degree program in comparative social policy to prepare for an executive position with UNICEF or another organization that works with governments to create social policies that benefit people in need.
Nancy Kolsti with UNT News Service can be reached at Nancy.Kolsti@unt.edu.