Marshall Scholars share stories of projects that they're proud of, exciting events that they've attended, and more!
"On 18 April, the Centre for Black Humanities at the University of Bristol hosted the conference 'New Direction in Black Humanities'. I participated as an early career researcher, presenting my paper "Fabulation, Physics, and Racial Horror: The Non-Local Unreality of Black Literature" on the literature panel. My paper uses concepts from quantum mechanics in conjunction with social geography to analyse black literary creation.
This was a wonderful opportunity to hear from researchers across the UK doing work in a variety of disciplines in black scholarship, and I'm so grateful I had the chance to present my own project as a panellist. In between panels, I was able to talk with some of the more seasoned researchers about their path through academia, any advice they have on pursuing a PhD, and to answer some follow up questions about my project. This was my first conference as a grad student, and I'm thrilled to say I had a lot of fun!"
"As a student at Queens University Belfast studying Conflict Transformation and Social Justice, I had the opportunity this April to hear from the architects of the landmark Good Friday Agreement, which formally ended three decades of armed conflict in Northern Ireland.
QUB and the city of Belfast received well-deserved international attention during a three-day conference featuring speakers that included Secretary Hillary Clinton, President Bill Clinton, Senator George Mitchell, TD Gerry Adams and Prime Minister Tony Blair that celebrated 25 years since the agreement was formalised.
We also heard from current leaders including Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, President of the European Commission Ursula Von Der Leyen, the leaders of the local political parties, and several victims who continue to advocate for the memory and justice of lost family members. Not to mention the other remarkable people in attendance! It was such a privilege to speak with people who had made definitive contributions to a (thus far!) successful peace agreement.
One of the resounding messages from the conference was about the importance of relationship between the USA and Northern Ireland, one that was demonstrated by the speakers list alone. Senator Mitchell, who led and mediated in the peace negotiations, spoke about the importance of his and other American politicians role as friends, cooperators, and supporters.
Throughout the conference, the continued support and investment of the US in Northern Ireland and its peace were emphasised. During a masterclass with my degree programme, Senator Mitchell cautioned any Americans taking up the mantle of mediation to remain respectful, to listen without any signs of indifference, and to be aware of the (at times unflattering) perception others have of the United States as a world leader. This was a great reminder of the importance of a programme like the Marshall Scholarship, which through facilitating my immersion in the UK, has made me more aware of this and, hopefully, into a more conscientious global citizen."
Since arriving in London, Tommy Hall (Marshall ’22) has settled into a challenging routine while reading for an MA in Chinese Studies at SOAS. He’s made the most of the Marshall Connect program by frequently meeting up with his fast-streamer, Paul Ritchie. This year for West Point’s Founder’s Day Dinner, Tommy invited Paul to attend as his guest. Being the youngest West Point graduate in attendance, this Second Lieutenant was tasked to deliver a short speech about the state of the Corps of Cadets. In short, Tommy reassured the attendees, including Hans Peng (Marshall ’95), that “the kids are alright.”
Additionally, Tommy has worked diligently to embed himself in the local community beyond Marshall affiliated events and programmes. He was recently selected for Young China Watcher’s mentorship scheme, where he was paired with MP Mark Logan (Bolton North East). Finally, Tommy has connected with prior Marshall Scholars, such as Margaret Siu (Marshall ’20) to co-author pieces about China for publication with LSE Ideas’ China Dialogue and other China-centric online platforms.