search-include | Coastal Carolina


Earl is CCU’s first Boren Scholarship recipient

May 27, 2022
Madison Earl is the recipient of a David L. Boren Scholarship.

Madison Earl, a Coastal Carolina University senior from Annapolis, Md., was recently awarded a David L. Boren Scholarship to study Portuguese at Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. Earl is an HTC Honors College student majoring in political science with minors in international political economy, marketing, and women’s and gender studies. She is the first CCU student to earn a Boren Scholarship.

Earl competed with 458 applicants for the Boren Scholarship. She is one of three recipients from schools in South Carolina, and one of seven students in the United States selected to study in Latin America.

The Boren Scholarship, an initiative of the Defense Language and National Security Education Office, helps U.S. students acquire language skills and experience in countries critical to the security and stability of the United States. In exchange for funding, Boren award recipients agree to work in the federal government for at least one year.

“The Boren Scholarship is an important and prestigious award for students interested in international affairs and public service,” said Jonathan Smith, Ph.D., professor and chair of intelligence and security studies and CCU’s campus representative for the Boren. “We are proud of Madison Earl’s accomplishment and hope that it sets the precedent for more success for the students at our University going forward.”

Earl said, “My parents have always encouraged me to travel. I chose to come to CCU for its study abroad programs and have had the opportunity to participate in two exchanges. My experiences, appreciation for new cultures, and passion for gender equality drove me to apply for the Boren Scholarship. Studying and learning Portuguese in Brazil will further the research and activism that I have done as an undergraduate student.”

Earl has served as the president of Phi Sigma Pi national honors fraternity and is a member of the Pi Sigma Alpha political science honors society, Triota women’s and gender studies honors society, and Chi Omega fraternity.

As an Honors Research Fellow, Earl assisted Kaitlin Sidorsky, Ph.D., associate professor of political science at CCU, by examining gendered differences in political ambition and representation. She continued working with Sidorsky as a Dyer Fellow. During her fellowship, Earl researched, created, and recommended a paid parental leave policy for the state of South Carolina. She also crafted a paid parental leave policy for the Waccamaw Regional Council of Governments as a U.N. Youth Corps intern.

“Maddie is a hardworking student dedicated to understanding different cultures around the world,” said Sidorsky. “She continues to find ways to use her many talents. She is an excellent choice for the Boren Scholarship, and I am excited to see what she accomplishes next.”

Earl plans to attend graduate school and eventually work in the Department of State as a foreign service officer or within the Office of Global Women’s Issues to advance gender equality through U.S. foreign policy.