Recent graduate wins 2003 Marshall ScholarshipBy Josh Schonwald
Margaret Hagan, a recent graduate of the College, is one of 40 students nationwide to have been awarded the prestigious British Marshall Scholarship. Hagan’s award brings Chicago’s total number of Marshall scholars to 17.
Hagan will use her scholarship, which will provide full tuition and a living stipend for the next two years, to study political science and peace and conflict resolution at either Queen’s University or the University of Ulster, both in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
Hagan, who is currently pursuing a master’s degree at the Central European University in Budapest, Hungary, will use her Marshall award to expand the research she is doing there-evaluating the effectiveness of national and international humanitarian groups in post-Milosevic Serbia. In Northern Ireland, Hagan will examine the role humanitarian groups have played in resolving the conflict there.
The former president of the University’s chapter of Amnesty International, Hagan eventually plans to pursue a career in human rights. Though she is not yet certain of the role she will play within the profession-whether as an attorney, an academic consultant or an activist-Hagan is particularly interested in the issues of war crime prosecution and minority rights protection.
Hagan, 22, of Pittsburgh, graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the College in 2003. She was a 2002 Student Marshal, the highest academic honor given to undergraduates. She also won the 2003 Ignacio Martin-Barro award for writing the best undergraduate essay related to human rights.
While at Chicago, Hagan also was active in numerous extracurricular activities, including serving as managing editor of Lepitr Masna, a Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian literary journal; contributing to the student newspaper, the Chicago Maroon; and directing “Loose Roots,” a traditional Korean drumming group.
Victor Friedman, the Andrew W. Mellon Professor in Slavic Languages & Literatures, said Hagan is among the top students he has had in nearly 30 years of teaching. In recommending her to the Marshall committee, Friedman, a Yugoslav expert and former policy analyst for the United Nations, praised the importance of Hagan’s proposed research. “I very much appreciate both the significance of the comparative study she proposes and her ability to do first-rate research,” Friedman wrote. “Ms. Hagan will be a real credit to those who support her work.”
The British Marshall Scholarship, one of the most prestigious academic scholarships, was founded by an Act of Parliament in 1953 and commemorates the humane ideals of the European Recovery Programme (Marshall Plan).
The scholarship is funded by the British government and encourages long-lasting ties between the United States and the United Kingdom. The scholarship provides full tuition and a living stipend to 40 Americans for two years of study in any field at any British university.