Hannah Short being presented with the TFAS Academic Excellence in Economics Award, with Professor Karen Czarnecki and Professor Richard Benedetto

Exeter graduate achieves First Class Honours from prestigious educational programme

A University of Exeter graduate has received a First Class Honours degree and Dean’s commendation from a renowned, non-profit organisation in America.

Hannah Short, who says American Politics has always fascinated her, has always dreamt of going to work in Washington D.C.

After graduating in History and Politics from the University of Exeter, Hannah discovered The Fund for American Studies (TFAS); an educational organisation that brings college students from all 50 US states and around the world to Washington, D.C., for academic courses, internships and intensive lectures on government, business and leadership. 

During the programme at George Mason University, Hannah participated in the 15-week Capital Semester and Leadership and the American Presidency fall semester.

This semester is sponsored by the Ronald Reagan Foundation, which grants scholarships for students, providing them with accommodation, and numerous activities to do alongside working, such as visiting Mount Vernon and President George Washington’s home. The scholarship also offers networking opportunities at organisations such as the World Bank.

While on the programme, Hannah interned at ALL IN Campus Democracy Challenge, a non-partisan, non-profit which aims to increase student political participation across US College Campuses. 

This month, following her graduation from the TFAS programme, Hannah was presented with the TFAS Academic Excellence in Economics award. She was selected for the award by her Economics Professor, who believed Hannah had put in the most effort during the term out of her 12 other scholars.

“I cannot even put into words how thankful I am for this experience,” said Hannah.

“The classes I completed at George Mason were taught by inspiring professors, who had worked previously in the White House, the CIA and more.

“The trips we embarked on allowed me to explore D.C. and get to the heart of what it would be like to live there.

“But, most importantly, my internship was incredible. Those at the ALL IN Challenge, a campaign within Civic Nation set up by the Obama Administration, was one of the most incredible experiences I could have asked for. The people who worked there I will admire forever; they have motivated me to always work hard in whatever future career I have.

“Finally, I am honoured to have worked alongside 12 other scholars, who will also go on to have amazing careers – I definitely made friends for life.” 

Before embarking on the programme, Hannah also interned with her local MP, both in her home town, Newbury in Berkshire, and in Exeter, giving her the opportunity to explore Westminster. She also previously volunteered at an all-girls school in Peru with World Challenge in 2014.

Date: 21 December 2018

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