Dartmouth College Jan. 25 announced that two individuals, including Soham Basu, were named as recipients of the Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship.
The college said that the fellowship, awarded to Basu and Ameena Razzaque, is funded by the U.S. Department of State and managed by Howard University's Ralph J. Bunche International Affairs Center, pays for a two-year master's degree program in a foreign policy-related field and provides internship, mentorship, and other opportunities designed to prepare students for careers in the U.S. Foreign Service.
"I am incredibly excited and humbled to receive the Pickering Fellowship," said Basu, a double-major in government and Asian societies, cultures, and languages from Cincinnati, Ohio.
"My parents immigrated to this country a little over 20 years ago and have worked hard to preserve our South Asian roots while making a new life as Americans. To be able to pursue a career in international affairs and hopefully deepen existing ties between the region and the U.S. is a great honor," the Indian American student said.
An analyst at the Washington, D.C.-based advisory service firm Atlas Organization, Basu decided to pursue a career in foreign service after an internship on the State Department's Pakistan desk, funded by the Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences, according to the Dartmouth report.
As an undergraduate, Basu traveled to Qatar with the Dickey Center for International Understanding's War and Peace Fellows Program; spent terms in France on a language study abroad program and in Washington, D.C., with the government department's domestic study program; and studied Hindi and Urdu in India on a Boren Scholarship during his senior year—experiences, he says, that "were instrumental in helping bridge my academic interests and my professional experiences," it said.