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Dec. 10, 2009 Volume 31, No. 15

Marshall-winning student aims at Middle East reporting goal

Media match

Scholarship is MU's first in more than 25 years

Brian Pellot, a senior at the Missouri School of Journalism, has received a prestigious Marshall Scholarship for the 2010-2012 academic years.

The scholarship, which is given to up to 40 American students each year, finances students’ education at academic institutions in the United Kingdom. Pellot will spend the next two years pursuing a master of philosophy degree in modern Middle Eastern studies at Oxford University.

“Oxford’s modern Middle Eastern studies program is a perfect match for me,” he says. “I really want to investigate and report on the region in-depth, so this background study will be crucial.”

Pellot, whose hometown is Wausau, Wis., is pursuing a double major in convergence journalism and international studies. He is the first MU student to receive a Marshall Scholarship since 1983. “It’s a great honor to be Mizzou’s first Marshall Scholar in more than 25 years,” he says. “I hope more students are encouraged to apply in future years.”

Pellot was one of more than 200 applicants from the Chicago region to the scholarship program. He learned at the beginning of November that he was on a short list of 25 candidates, and he traveled to Chicago for a 30-minute interview in front of an eight-person panel. He learned the next day by phone that he had received the scholarship.

Pellot has a wealth of experience in Middle Eastern studies, as he was a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar and Clinton Scholar at the American University in Dubai. In 2009, Pellot monitored Lebanon’s parliamentary elections and reported for Inter Press Service News Agency and Foreign Policy. He also has reported for the Huffington Post on trips to Egypt, Qatar and Jordan.