Sophomore Zach Strouse was recently awarded the Andrew Mutch Scholarship from the St. Andrews Society of Philadelphia to study abroad in Scotland. Strouse will use the $20,000 scholarship to spend his junior year at Edinburgh University in Scotland.
Q: What is the Saint Andrew’s Scholarship?
A: It’s the Saint Andrew’s Society of Philadelphia which has about 400 members. The scholarship committee is made up of about fifteen members, and they give out five Mutch Scholarships. Each scholarship is $20,000, and each one is for a different University; one is for Aberdeen, one is for Glasgow, one is for the University of Saint Andrews, and then the remaining two are for the University of Edinburgh. Schools are asked by the Saint Andrew’s Society to interview candidates and send one to the committee in Philadelphia where they pick a winner.
Q: Why did you decide to apply for the Saint Andrew’s Scholarship?
A: I wanted to go abroad for the year, and I knew that financially that would be kind of hard to juggle, so an opportunity like the Saint Andrew’s Scholarship seemed like the best solution to that problem. Also I feel like it would challenge me more to go to Scotland instead of England because the culture is so different, especially because there will be no other Juniata students there so I won’t have that safety net to fall back on.
Q: What did the application process involve?
A: I had to write an essay and interview with a committee (at Juniata). Then I had to meet with Jack Barlow and Alison Fletcher who are the mentors for the program at Juniata, and they worked with me on the paper and prepared me for the interview process. We went out to lunch one day to prepare for the interview. It was really beneficial and I felt like even if I hadn’t done it I would suggest the experience to anyone. It puts you in the mindset for a graduate school or job interview.
Q: What are you most looking forward to in your year in Scotland?
A: I’m looking forward to it because I grew up in Lock Haven, which is an area a lot like Huntingdon, and Edinburgh is the capital of Scotland. It’s a cultural hub and a huge sprawling city. The University is massive. It should be an opportunity for me to challenge myself, to be in a different urban area and meet new people. I’m excited to try something new and be in an environment that’s entirely different from what I’m used to.
Q: What are you most nervous about?
A: I think it’s going to be a little nerve-wracking because there is not safety net and there is no established program between Edinburgh and Juniata. There will be no other Juniata students going and it’s going to be a little different trying to set up the specifics. I’m going to be relying a lot on the people in Edinburgh rather than Juniata’s International Office. I’m a little nervous about the practicalities.
Kelsey Molseed ‘14
Campus Opinions Student Reporter