August 10, 2012
Justin Osborne, of Piketon, has been awarded a full Chinese government scholarship for his master's degree at Beijing Normal University where he will be studying education.
Osborne graduated from Shawnee State University in the Fall 2011 Commencement with a bachelor's degree in international relations. In 2010, he was in the Study Abroad program in Spain.
The Chinese scholarship includes tuition, room, food, an inner-city transport pass and a living allowance.
Rita Haider, director of the Center for International Programs and Activities, was in China in 2010 meeting with Chinese officials at several schools and at their international offices.
Officials expressed to her that they wanted to increase their enrollment of Americans and offered some scholarships. After working with Osborne at CIPA, Haider thought he would be a perfect candidate for the program and gave him the information and application.
"It was a pretty complicated application process," Osborne said. "It took a while, but I was finally informed that I was accepted and they told me it was because of Rita's recommendation that I was awarded the scholarship."
The university is an English-speaking university but Osborne is studying the Chinese language while he is there. He said he intends to work tirelessly and to enjoy his time there and see as much of East Asia as he can.
"I feel very thankful," he said. "Thankful to the Chinese government and BNU, the good teachers I had at SSU and Piketon, my parents for always supporting me, and most especially for Rita. Not only was she the sole reason I got accepted and the scholarship, but she really pushed me, and helped me through the application process, and even before that. I really owe it all to her."