A Tibetan origin youth in the United States has won a prestigious fellowship that provides him the opportunity to become a US diplomat in two years. The University of Massachusetts Amherst on Tuesday announced the news through a report in their official website.
Tenzin Dawa Thargay, a 2018 graduate and the student commencement speaker from the University has been awarded a 2019 Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Fellowship. Thargay also becomes the first student to be awarded the fellowship from the University.
“My heritage and family immigration story fueled my majors in political science, Chinese, and career aspirations to serve the U.S. government. The Rangel fellowship represents the natural stepping stone to realize a career where I can give back to this country—which has afforded me a privileged life—and represent national interests in the international system.” said the first generation Tibetan-American, Tenzin Dawa Thargay.
Thargay is a first-generation Tibetan-American whose grandparents fled Tibet in 1959 and settled in India. His parents immigrated to the U.S. from India in 1993, entrusted by the Dalai Lama as representatives of Tibet.
The fellowship, funded by the U.S. Department of State and administered by Howard University, supports extraordinary individuals who want to pursue a career in the U.S. Foreign Service. Fellowships are awarded in a highly competitive nationwide contest.
The Rangel fellowship will support Thargay through a two-year master’s degree in an area of relevance to the Foreign Service. It will also provide extensive professional development opportunities, including internships, mentors and skills training. Thargay will work for a member of Congress on issues related to foreign affairs in the summer of 2019 and the Department of State will send him overseas to work in a U.S. Embassy to get hands-on experience with U.S. foreign policy and the work of the Foreign Service in summer 2020. Upon successful completion of the program, Thargay will become a U.S. diplomat.
Thargay earned a duel degree in political science and Chinese. During college, he won the David L. Boren Scholarship from the National Security Engagement Program and studied in Taiwan. A member of Commonwealth Honors College, he won a Fulbright Research Scholarship, the Commonwealth Honors College Class of 1941 Honors Humanitarian Award, Political Science Department Public Service Award, and the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences’ Feldman-Vorwerk Family Undergraduate Research Award.