Maria Garcia, who is majoring in International Studies, French and German, received one of 12 Zero Hunger Summer Internships, selected from a pool of 400 applicants who have demonstrated commitment to ending hunger in their communities. With her internship, she is working this summer with the International Food Policy Research Institute in Washington, D.C.
The Zero Hunger Internship Program, offered by the nonprofit organization, the Congressional Hunger Center with support from the Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation, gives the student leaders a chance to study the power of advocacy and the policy-making process with hands-on work at leading anti-hunger organizations that work on issues of domestic and/or global food security.
Garcia also was named the 2019 Student International Education Award recipient by the UNC Charlotte Office of International Programs.
The award recognizes an individual for outstanding contributions to and involvement in areas such as a study abroad experience, involvement in internationally focused clubs, work and volunteer experiences with the Office of International Programs or other globally focused co-curricular activities.
In addition to her classroom studies, Garcia has studied abroad in Lyon, France, and Berlin. During her time in Germany, she served as a student blogger and Snapchatter for the American Institute for Foreign Study Program and shared her experiences to encourage others to study abroad. Additionally, she served as an overseas ambassador for Diversity Abroad; she wrote articles and represented the organization on social media as an advocate for intercultural exchange.
She also served as a peer advisor for the Office of Education Abroad and as a conversation partner for the English Language Training Institute. As an undergraduate research assistant, she worked in the Department of Political Science and Public Administration on various projects.
As a Charlotte Community Scholar, Garcia works with an immigration attorney in Charlotte to meet various local immigration needs. Her native languages are English and Spanish. In addition, she has studied French, German and Portuguese.
Each year, OIP recognizes one faculty member and one student. The Faculty International Education Award is given in recognition of outstanding contributions to the enhancement of the international education experience at UNC Charlotte.
The Student International Education Award recognizes an individual for his/her outstanding contributions to and involvement in areas such as a study abroad experience, involvement in internationally focused clubs, work/volunteer experiences with the Office of International Programs or other globally focused co-curricular activities.
Words and Image: Courtesy of the Office of International Program