Savannah State Student Lands Prestigious Rangel Fellowship

Schonn Franklin
Schonn Franklin

Schonn Franklin, a senior political science major at Savannah State University (SSU), has been selected as a Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Fellow. Only 30 in the nation are chosen each year, from among hundreds of applicants. Franklin is SSU’s first Rangel International Affairs Fellow.

Intended to broaden the depth of diversity among foreign service and U.S. State Department employees, the program supports educational and experiential learning for political science students. Each Rangel Fellow who successfully completes the program requirements commits to a minimum of five years of service in an appointment as a foreign service officer in the U.S. State Department.

“Mr. Franklin’s education at Savannah State University directly correlates with our mission to prepare our students for the global workforce,” said SSU interim president Kimberly Ballard-Washington.

“Because of his foundational experience here at SSU and his personal work ethic, I know he will thrive in graduate school and as he embarks on his new adventures in the wider world.”

Founded in 2002, the Rangel program has fellows and scholars representing the United States in 60 countries around the world, in areas as diverse as Africa, East Asia, Latin America, South Asia, Europe, Eurasia and Canada.

In addition to a stipend of $16,000 per year for two years, Rangel Fellows receive up to $21,500 annually towards tuition and fees for completion of an approved two-year master’s program in international affairs or other major related to the foreign service.

The fellowship program also includes a 10- week internship on Capitol Hill and a 10-week overseas internship at a U.S. embassy or consulate.

“Acceptance into the Rangel International Affairs Fellowship program emphasizes that hard work truly pays off,” said Franklin. “SSU programs such as Model African Union and Model United Nations, paired with political science courses, prepared me to enter the international affairs field with confidence.” Franklin, a native of Memphis, Tenn., will choose a graduate school in March. He will begin the official process with a Rangel Fellowship and Foreign Service orientation in Washington, D.C., in May.

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