Phillips Ambassadors to study in Asia for summer/fall 2012

The summer and fall '12 Phillips Ambassadors are pictured with (far left) Phil Phillips. (photo by Steve Exum)

Sixteen undergraduates from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill have been selected as Phillips Ambassadors for summer, fall, and year-long 2012 study abroad programs in Asia. The Summer/Fall Phillips Ambassadors will study in greater China, including Hong Kong; India, Thailand, Japan, and Singapore.

One graduate student has been selected as a Phillips Ambassador to conduct independent research in India.

Phillips Ambassadors are selected twice a year and receive up to $7,500 each for a semester or year-long program and up to $5,000 each for a summer program. Recipients are selected for academic achievement and commitment to activities, service and leadership roles in the classroom and community.

UNC’s Phillips Ambassadors program includes a three-credit academic course that puts the overseas experience in global context and challenges students to share their experiences of Asia upon their return.

Since the Phillips Ambassadors program began in 2007, it has sent 162 undergraduates to Asia, including this cohort. Recipients are chosen twice each year, with 25 percent of the scholarships reserved for qualified undergraduate business majors and minors from Kenan-Flagler Business School. The Ambassadors choose from more than 50 UNC-approved academic programs in Asia that are offered by the College of Arts and Sciences and Kenan-Flagler.

The program emphasizes what is called “Give Back,” having the Ambassadors share their study abroad experiences with the Carolina community and their hometowns. In accepting the scholarship, a student agrees to submit an article about his or her studies in Asia to a campus or hometown publication. Students also give outreach presentations about their experiences at a school in their hometown and North Carolina schools.

Earl N. “Phil” Phillips Jr., who graduated from UNC with a business administration degree in 1962, established an endowment, along with his family, to create the Phillips Ambassadors. The program is intended to generate greater interest in Asia among UNC students. Phillips has worked and traveled in Asia for more than 20 years and is a former U.S. Ambassador to the eastern Caribbean.

“Our goal with this gift has been to encourage more students to spend their study abroad experiences focused on Asia – an increasingly vital region of the future,” said Phillips, an entrepreneur who splits his time between High Point and Chapel Hill.

The new Phillips Ambassadors are listed below alphabetically.

Jamie Berger
UNC Summer in India
Major: Romance languages
From: Cary, NC

Wilton Burns
UNCIE Thailand Field Site in Energy and Environment
Major: Environmental Science
From: Chapel Hill, NC

Brendan Cooley
CET Beijing
Double major: Peace, War, and Defense / Economics
From: Severna Park, MD

H.K. Hallett III
Chinese University of Hong Kong
Major: Business
From: Charlotte, NC

Aseem Hasnain
Graduate Student Ambassador
research in India
From: India

Michelle Mariko Ikoma
Chinese University of Hong Kong
Double major: Business and Exercise and Sports Science
From: Naperville, IL

Hannah Margaret Lindquist
CET Beijing
Major: Public Policy
From: Raleigh, NC

Amaya Madden
UNC Summer in Japan
Major: Asian Studies
From: Lancaster, PA

Amanda Melton
UNC-Peking University Entrepreneurship Summer
Double Major: English and Comparative Literature/Computer Science
From: Concord, NC

Komal Patel
University of Hong Kong
Major: Undeclared
From: Cary, NC

Claire Powers
International Internship Hong Kong Summer
Major: Business
From: Charlotte, NC

Meghan Robbins
Mahidol University International College

Jessica Smith
UNCIE Thailand Field Site in Energy and Environment
Major: Environmental Science
From: Charlotte, NC

Timothy Allen Stump, Jr.
UNC-Peking University Entrepreneurship Summer
Double majors: History / Peace, War, and Defense
From: Charlotte, NC

Madelyn Usher
UNC-NUS Joint Degree
Major: Political science
From: Charlotte, NC

Cierra Warren
UNC-Peking University Entrepreneurship Summer
Double majors: psychology and Afro- and African-American Studies
From : Morrisville,  NC

Peter Warrington
National University of Singapore Summer Lab Exchange
Undeclared major
From Olds, Alberta, Canada

Zachary Zlatev
Chinese University of Hong Kong
Major: Business
From: Boca Raton, FL

Phillips Ambassadors Web site:

Read a story about Phillips Ambassadors’ visit with a UNC Board of Governors delegation in March at National Tawain University.