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John Hanson is UMM's first Killam Scholar

Posted by By Jesh Livstrom '10, Roseville on Friday, May. 2, 2008

Event Date/Time: Monday, Sep. 15, 2008
End Date/Time: Sunday, May. 17, 2009

University of Minnesota, Morris senior John Hanson of Falcon Heights is the first UMM student to receive a scholarship from the Killam Fellowships Program. Hanson will be recognized, along with other student award recipients, during the May 16 Student Honors and Awards event at UMM.

The Killam Fellowships Program provides awards for undergraduate students attending college in either Canada or the United States to attend a single semester as an exchange student in the other country. The scholarships are nationally competitive and exceptional students are chosen based on their prospects of furthering research and cultural growth in the host country. The award provides tuition and support for an educational field trip in the host country.

“We are delighted that John Hanson has been selected as a 2008 Killam Fellow,” said Paula O’Loughlin, UMM associate professor of political science and director of the campus’ Academic Center for Enrichment, which oversees students’ application to programs and national honors such as the one Hanson has received. “He has been an exceptional student and scholar throughout his time at UMM and is well deserving of this honor. John's receipt of this award as a philosophy and history double major is testimony to the high quality of our students overall and to the continuing value of the liberal arts in today's world. We are proud of him.”

Hanson was chosen because of his solid collegiate performance as well as his extensive involvement in extracurricular activities. Hanson’s UMM experience includes serving as president of the Morris Philosophy Club, head copy editor of the student newspaper— University Register—and working as a teaching assistant, to name a few. He credits his ample involvement in extracurricular activities to the fertile participatory environment provided by the UMM community.

As a double major in philosophy and history, Hanson plans to use his scholarship to attend the University of Toronto in fall 2008. The University of Toronto is recognized as having an excellent philosophy department that will provide him with distinctive research opportunities.

Hanson envisions studying continental and medieval philosophy with the intent of applying his research to current dilemmas faced by the world today. He explains his purpose by stating: “We have all these ways of thinking about our social and cultural context that come out of the transition to modernity and we tend to just fall back on those forms when we encounter social or political conflicts. I’m hoping to study other ways in which those issues can be and have been thought about, both historically and in more contemporary discussions. Toronto is a great place to do that.”

Hanson’s primary current concern, he said, is finding a place to live, although he shared that Toronto is apparently, “a great place in which to be homeless once you get over the weather.”

For more information about UMM's Academic Center for Enrichment, visit ACE.