Queens College freshman, Indian American Renuka Surujnarain, has been awarded a prestigious Jeannette K. Watson Fellowship, among 15 others.
Surujnarain will begin her fellowship by interning with the Generation Study Abroad Initiative at the Institute of International Education in Manhattan, which seeks to double the number of U.S. students studying overseas by the end of the decade through study abroad programs, service learning trips, internships, and non-credit academic experiences.
Surujnarain’s responsibilities involve digital communications strategy and implementation; her tasks range from managing the initiative’s website and producing e-newsletters to working on social media content, research, and event planning.
“The second I heard about this opportunity through an information session at school, I knew it was a program meant for me. After multiple application drafts and mock interviews, I won a fellowship that would brighten the next three years of my college life,” Surujnarain said in a press release.
“I am excited to work alongside different organizations, which will help me determine where I have the greatest potential. I am also grateful to have the chance to travel beyond New York City and experience what other cultural spaces have to offer,” she added.
“We congratulate Renuka on this impressive accomplishment. We thank the Watson Foundation for giving our students opportunities that enable them to make the most of their undergraduate years at Queens College,” Queens College President Félix V. Matos Rodríguez said in a press release.
“These experiences will prepare them to enter the workforce ready to contribute on day one. We know Renuka’s time as a Jeannette K. Watson Fellow will serve her well in her own development and enrich the Queens College community,” he added.
At Queens College, Surujnarain is exploring the subjects of education, anthropology, neuroscience, and public administration.
As a member of Project Start, she visits elementary school classrooms to teach young students about science.
The Watson Fellowship was established in 1999 and provides New York City college students with three years of paid summer internships, in New York City or abroad, with leading nonprofit, for-profit, and governmental organizations.