Announcing the 2016 Mertie Buckman Interns

a group of three female students and two male students
Pictured are (front) Roz KennyBirch and (back l-r) Ellie Valega, Maiar Salameh, Veronica Francis, and Joseph Ozment.

In 1994, the Mertie W. Buckman International Internship Program was initiated by a generous gift from the Buckman family to provide outstanding international studies majors at Rhodes opportunities to work outside the United States during the summer months. Rhodes is proud to announce the 2016 Mertie Buckman Interns: 

Veronica Francis ’17 (Belgium)

“Belgium will be a completely new experience for me. I’ve spent some time in the UK and France, but I’ve never gone further into continental Europe. Brussels is a center for international research, and living there would mean that I would be able to interact with some of the most preeminent minds on foreign policy and security.”

Roz KennyBirch ’17 (Uganda)

“I am choosing to pursue an internship in Jinja, Uganda, due to my interest in exploring the effects of British colonization in the country’s political, social, and cultural spheres. Additionally, I hope to assist in the ongoing recovery of the child soldiers that were forced to serve in the Lord’s Resistance Army. I am looking forward to exploring the culture of Uganda, whether that be sampling traditional food, reading a local paper in the morning, or performing research on the country’s historical background for my internship, as well as developing friendships with people from backgrounds vastly different from my own.”

Joseph Ozment ’17 (Russia)

“I chose to go to Russia because I have a fascination with the incredibly unique culture of the country and to expand my worldview beyond Western horizons. I am most looking forward to meeting people! I am sure there will be plenty of fascinating people with much to teach me and from whom I can learn during my time in the country.”

Maiar Salameh ’17 (Middle East/North Africa)

“I am looking at internships in the Middle East/North Africa region that deal with human rights through law proceedings and/or non-profits. I am really interested in working with refugees and immigrants because I feel like they are always misrepresented, especially in the media. I believe that these people have such resilience that most people can only dream of. I want to give a voice to refugees and immigrants and defend people that can’t defend themselves. I am most excited about being fully immersed in another culture.”

Ellie Valega ’18 (Argentina)

“The two most important reasons I chose Argentina are its rich culture after a civil war just 30 years ago, and it is a Spanish-speaking country. I know that I will learn so much about how the society is dealing with the repercussions of the war, as well as improve my Spanish. I am most excited to learn about the history of the country through experience—to be able to see important historical sites and talk to the people around me about their thoughts and opinions. This will be an experience that will influence my future as an international studies major. 

Lucy Right ’17 (France), who has been participating in a study abroad program the fall 2015 semester and unavailable for comments, also is a 2016 Mertie Buckman Intern.