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7 Indian-Americans get Soros fellowship

March 16, 2007 02:19 IST

Seven Indian-Americans are among 31 recipients of this year's Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship for New Americans.

The fellowship, open to resident aliens, naturalised US citizens, and first generation Americans who have completed or are about to complete undergraduate degrees, will support each student for up to two years of graduate study.

Gaurav Gupta, 21, of McLean, Va., will use his fellowship to attend medical school this September. A biomedical engineering major at Johns Hopkins University, Gupta has been conducting cardiovascular physiology research since his freshman year, and has been listed as a co-author on three academic publications.

Amit Kaushal, 25, of Newhall, California, is pursuing a combined MD/PhD at Stanford University. He has completed two years of medical school and is now in the first year of his PhD in biomedical informatics.

Sumir Meghani, born in Burlington, VT, a first-year MBA candidate at Harvard Business School, holds a BA in economics and an MS in computer science, both from Stanford University.

Nina Shen Rastogi, 28, currently an associate editor at Barnes and Noble Publishing, plans on entering a master's programme in journalism in the fall. Rastogi holds a BA in English from Yale University and an MA in Shakespearean studies from King's College London and the Globe Theatre.

Raj Shah, 28, born in Madisonville, TX, currently a special assistant to the Deputy Undersecretary of Defence for International Technology Security in the US Department of Defence, plans to attend business school in the fall.

Shah holds an AB from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University. Upon graduating from Princeton, he took a job at McKinsey and Company, but left four months after the September 11, 2001 World Trade Center attacks to join the US Air Force.

A graduate of both USAF pilot training and Officer Training School, Shah has flown 18 combat missions in Iraq as a captain and an F-16 pilot.

Gaurav Singal, 23, of Maryland, is in his second year of the health sciences and technology programme at Harvard Medical School and MIT. He completed his BS in computer engineering at Columbia University and is interested in the medical potential of artificial intelligence.

James R Williams, 22, graduated from Princeton University last year with a degree in public and international affairs. Brought up in Portland, Ore by a Zoroastrian Persian mother and a Christian Indian father, Williams is also a Truman Scholar and is currently working on environmental law and policy in India.

He plans to begin law school in the fall and hopes to one day make a career in politics.

Each of the fellows will receive a maintenance grant of USD 20,000 and a tuition grant of one-half the tuition cost of the graduate program they attend.

The programme was established in 1997 by Paul and Daisy Soros of New York as a charitable trust of fifty million dollars to support graduate study by New Americans --

immigrants and children of immigrants.

From over 800 applications representing 141 national origins and 360 colleges and universities, the thirty-one were selected for the two-year fellowships by panels composed of New Americans.
Seema Hakhu Kachru in Houston
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