Two GDS alumni—Will Cullen ’15 (Claremont McKenna) and Max Labaton ’16 (Duke)—were named Schwarzman Scholars, the first scholarship created “to respond to the geopolitical landscape of the 21st century.” Modeled after the Rhodes Scholarship and Mitchell Scholars Program, Schwarzman Scholars will attend the best universities in China for a master's program.
Will graduated cum laude with honors from Claremont McKenna College in 2019 with a BA in environment, economics, and politics. The scholarship has awarded him a fully funded one-year master’s degree program at Tsinghua University in Beijing. Will said, “I am incredibly thankful for the teachers I had during my 13 years at GDS who always encouraged me to think globally and lead thoughtfully. I have carried these lessons with me through my research on renewable energy and language learning in India, and I am excited to continue them during my next year as a Schwarzman Scholar in China. I hope to lead multilateral climate change negotiations at the United Nations and facilitate a global clean energy transition to mitigate the effects of climate change.”
Max, who is currently serving as the managing editor of The Chronicle at Duke University, will graduate with a degree in public policy studies, and minors in history and political science. Duke Today reported that Labaton “is a student leader of the American Grand Strategy Program, where he has organized and participated in on-campus panels and off-campus travel to better understand the history of international conflicts."
Max added, “I am thrilled about the opportunity to study in China with so many talented peers. I look forward to gaining a greater understanding of how the U.S. and China can cooperate on crucial global challenges.”