July 7, 2022

Hello! My name is Maddie Earl, and I am a recent graduate of Coastal Carolina University. At CCU, I majored in Political Science with minors in marketing, women and gender studies, and international political economy.

Maddie standing with a Phi Sigma Pi banner and gavel.

I am super excited to be awarded the Boren Scholarship to study Portuguese in Brazil for the upcoming academic year. The David L. Boren Award is an initiative of the Defense Language and National Security Education Office and funds opportunities for students in the United States to study language and national security abroad. Our Director of National Scholarships at CCU, Judith Zang, helped me to find the award and craft my application.

As the first student at my university to be awarded this opportunity, I hope to represent my university positively, make connections, and improve my language and adaptability skills. I will be attending Pontifical Catholic University in Rio de Janeiro Brazil which has recently celebrated its 80th anniversary. I have not yet been to the Latin American region although I have been able to travel to Italy and England through education abroad trips at Coastal Carolina. I will be living with a host family in the area allowing me to learn Portuguese and adapt to Brazilian culture more quickly.

Maddie and fellow Members pose at a roundtable event with the Metrolina Alumni Chapter
Maddie and fellow Members pose at a roundtable event with the Metrolina Alumni Chapter

My experience in Phi Sigma Pi began when I joined the Zeta Xi chapter in Spring 2019. I served as President my senior year and New Member Advisor the year prior. Zeta Xi has given me many opportunities and memories including the chance to travel to Charlotte for a round table event with the Metrolina Alum Chapter and attend the first Virtual National Convention in 2021 as our Chapter’s delegate. Our Chapter was also involved in the community through local beach clean-ups, relay for life, and fundraisers. I am originally from Annapolis, Maryland, and in the future, I hope to stay involved with Phi Sigma Pi by joining an alumni chapter in the DC area!