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Graduating Senior Receives Fulbright Award

Riley Clark

Riley Clark is the third North Parker to receive a Fulbright in the last two consecutive years

CHICAGO, IL (April 20, 2009) – Ask most graduating seniors about their post-college plans, and you may get a host of answers—"traveling abroad," "furthering my education," and "getting a job," among them.

Come September, Spanish and business double major Riley Clark will have the opportunity to do all three as the latest North Park University recipient of a prestigious Fulbright Award.

Granted by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board and the United States Department of State, the award is also sponsored by the Fulbright Garcia-Robles Commission in Mexico. It will cover Clark’s full expenses for a yearlong professional business experience at a bi-national business or a nongovernment agency in Mexico, in either Mexico City or Monterrey.

"I believe my experience as a Fulbright grantee will provide me with the impetus to contribute to the connectedness of the international business community," says Clark, who will be assigned to a specific company by the Garcia-Robles Commission within the next few weeks.

During the past two years the Commission has placed grantees in companies such as Banamex, Banorte, NAFTA Fund, New Ventures, Proctor & Gamble, Rothschild Bank, and Scotiabank, among others. In addition, Clark will be allowed to take two graduate courses each semester, in Spanish, business, finance, international trade, and comparative law.    

Clark is one of only 10 outstanding students from across the country chosen by the Fulbright Commission to work in a bi-national company. He is also the third North Parker to receive a Fulbright Award in the last two consecutive years. Last year, 2007 graduate Rebecca Miller was a grantee, and this year, professor of Spanish Linda Parkyn received a Fulbright Specialists Award, reserved for faculty and professionals.

Parkyn, who will spend several weeks in Honduras teaching applied linguistics this spring, was Clark’s mentor throughout the application process, and herself traveled to Mexico in 2003 as a Fulbright grantee.

"Riley is uniquely qualified to use his knowledge of Spanish as well as his business acumen to become a bilingual business leader," she says, noting that the award will give Clark an opportunity to "put a human face" on the intercultural relationships between the United States and its neighbors in Mexico. "We all can be proud that North Park University educates students who can compete at this level."