Members of the Class of 2011 Receive Fellowships for Graduate Study in England

Media contact: Noelle Lemoine, communications assistant; tele: (413) 597-4277; email: [email protected]

WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass., December 21, 2010 — Williams College has announced that six members of the Class of 2011 have been awarded prestigious fellowships for graduate study in England. This year’s recipients of the Dr. Herchel Smith Fellowship for graduate study at Emmanuel College, Cambridge University, are Antoniya Aleksandrova, Marissa Kimsey, Zebulon Levine, Charles Rousseau, and Jehanne Wyllie. Yue-Yi Hwa was awarded the Donovan-Moody Fellowship for graduate study at Oxford University. The applicants were selected from a pool of 28 students.

Aleksandrova, a physics and math major from Varna, Bulgaria, plans to study for a Ph.D. in applied mathematics and theoretical physics. She is currently writing a thesis in the area of quantum information. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, she has conducted research over two summers with faculty members of the physics department. She has spent time at Williams tutoring fellow students in writing and physics. She is also a member of the college’s badminton club and Outing Club.

Kimsey is an economics and women’s and gender studies double major from Highland Park, Ill. She plans to pursue an M.Phil. in development studies as well as a degree in economics. Also a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Kimsey’s senior thesis project is a computable general equilibrium analysis of social grants in South Africa. Kimsey has been awarded numerous grants, allowing her to conduct research on social grants from a gender perspective in South Africa, Mozambique, Bolivia and Brazil.

Levine, a resident of South Burlington, Vt., will pursue a research-based M.Phil. in chemistry, working in organic synthesis. He is a chemistry major with a concentration in biochemistry/molecular biology. Levine is a 1960s Scholar in the chemistry department as well as one of the chairs of the chemistry student advisory council. He is also a member of the varsity wrestling team and a rock climbing instructor and monitor at the college’s climbing wall.

Rousseau, a native of Richmond, Va., is an English and religion double major. At Cambridge, he plans to work toward a Diploma in Theology in his first year and toward a Ph.D. in culture and criticism in his second. Currently, he is writing an English thesis about the relationship between apocalypticism and literature. A tour guide and member of the Springstreeters, Rousseau has also been the student director for the Writing Workshop and founded and led groups on campus seeking to create forums for discussion of religion, belief, and personal questions.

Wyllie, a double major in English and American studies, is a native of the U.S. Virgin Islands who currently lives in Miami, Fla. She will pursue an M.Phil. in social anthropology and course work in English studies. At Williams, Wyllie is a member of the Claiming Williams Steering Committee and a 1960s Scholar in the English department. She spent a summer working with the Chinese-American Planning Council in New York City as a community organizer to galvanize political and financial support for workforce development and youth programming. She also served in the AmeriCorps during a gap year following her sophomore year.

Hwa, an Arabic studies and political economy major from Penang, Malaysia, will pursue an M.Phil. in politics at Oxford. She was awarded fellowships for summer research on language an education policy in Malaysia. She has interned at the Socioeconomic and Environmental Research Institute in Malaysia, writing a paper on labor statistics and policy which was published in a volume of conference proceedings. At Williams, Hwa has served as editor-in-chief of the “Williams Record,” as well as founder and editor-in-chief of “Telos,” a journal of Christian discourse. She is a member of Williams Christian Fellowship and a peer tutor in the economics department.

The Dr. Herchel Smith Fellowships were established in 1979 by Dr. Herchel Smith to enable Williams graduates to study at Emmanuel College, Cambridge University, for two years after graduation. Selection is based on general intellectual ability and attainment in the student’s major field of study, as well as the promise of original and creative work and character. Other criteria include leadership, scholarly attainment, and physical vigor.

The Dorothy H. Donovan Memorial Fellowship was established in 1978 by Hedley T. Donovan in memory of his wife to support Williams graduates at Oxford. The John Edmund Moody 1921 Fellowship was established in 1927 by Mr. John Moody in memory of his son to support graduate study at Oxford University during the two years following graduation. Selection criteria include general intellectual ability as shown in the major field of study, with special attention to character, need of assistance, and promise of original and creative work.


Founded in 1793, Williams College is the second-oldest institution of higher learning in Massachusetts. The college’s 2,000 students are taught by a faculty noted for the quality of their teaching and research, and the achievement of academic goals includes active participation of students with faculty in their research. Students’ educational experience is enriched by the residential campus environment in Williamstown, Mass., which provides a host of opportunities for interaction with one another and with faculty beyond the classroom. Admission decisions are made regardless of a student’s financial ability, and the college provides grants and other assistance to meet the demonstrated needs of all who are admitted.

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