UNC-Chapel Hill alumna selected for Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship Program

Tiffany Cox
Tiffany Cox

Tiffany Cox, a 2016 alumna of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, has been selected for the distinguished Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship. Through its undergraduate and graduate fellowships, the program aims to prepare individuals pursuing graduate studies for a career in the U.S. Department of State Foreign Service. This year, 10 Undergraduate Fellows and 20 Graduate Fellows were chosen.

Cox received the Pickering Graduate Fellowship, which offers up to $37,500 annually for tuition, room and board, books, mandatory fees and some travel expenses, for a two-year master’s degree in fields related to the Foreign Service such as business administration, economics, public policy, international affairs and other relevant fields.

Other program benefits include internships at a Department of State domestic office in Washington, D.C. and at an overseas U.S. embassy or consulate and mentoring from a Foreign Service officer throughout the fellowship. It also offers employment in the Department of State Foreign Service for those who successfully complete the program and Foreign Service entry requirements.

“In addition to funding graduate study, the Pickering Graduate Fellowship also provides its recipients with service experiences, professional mentoring, and the opportunity for future employment,” said Mary Floyd-Wilson, director of Carolina’s Office of Distinguished Scholarships. “By fully investing in the extraordinary potential of its candidates, this prestigious program ensures that the U.S. Department of State Foreign Service will represent the diversity and excellence of our country to the world.”

Cox, a 22-year-old native of Winston-Salem, double-majored in global studies and public policy and minored in Chinese in the College of Arts and Sciences. During her time at Carolina, she was co-chair of the Campus Y Global Circle and Vice President of Outgoing Exchange for AIESEC, the world’s largest student-run nonprofit organization focused on world issues, leadership and management. In her role at AIESEC, she facilitated over 30 international exchange opportunities for students at UNC-Chapel Hill to volunteer abroad as English instructors.

Cox interned as an English instructor in both Taiwan and China and also for the Office of UNESCO Affairs in the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of International Organization Affairs. As a Pickering Graduate Fellow, she will study American foreign policy at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

“My experience at UNC-Chapel Hill, specifically with the global studies and public policy programs, was fundamental towards developing my passion and professional background in foreign policy,” said Cox. “I would not have been able to succeed in the Pickering Graduate Fellowship application process without the knowledge and professional skills I have developed throughout the past four years.”

Hundreds of applicants from more than 160 schools competed for the fellowships, which are managed and funded by the U.S. Department of State and administered by The Washington Center. The program identifies talented people from all ethnic, racial and social backgrounds who have an interest in pursuing a Foreign Service career. Consideration is given to qualified applicants who, in addition to outstanding leadership skills and academic achievement, demonstrate financial need. Women, members of minority groups historically underrepresented in the Foreign Service, and people with financial need are encouraged to apply.

The Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship Program honors one of the most accomplished U.S. Foreign Service Officers of the 20th century. Pickering was appointed Career Ambassador, the highest rank in the U.S. Foreign Service. He served in many leading positions around the world during his Foreign Service career, including Ambassador to Nigeria, El Salvador, Israel, India and Russia. Pickering concluded his career as Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs.