Mike Scanlin (Founder)
The Chris Borton Memorial Scholarship Fund earned enough to award three $3,000 scholarships for study abroad this year. The Board members each reviewed independently the ten nameless applications sent to us by the UC San Diego Education Abroad Office and were again impressed with the fine group of applicants, from which we all chose the same three. Then came the serendipitous treat: the names of our selectees were revealed to be Christopher Beck, Ben Winkler-McCue and Ellen Holloway. With the same names as the Borton sons, the young men had to be special, while Ellen is a graduate of Chris’ high school and was in one of Verena’s Davis Art Center weaving classes many years ago.
They turned out to be extra special too in that each came to visit the Borton home in Davis before departing for Europe: easy for Ellen, but a special effort for Christopher from the San Diego area and for Ben from Santa Cruz. Ben was able to accompany us to The Sea Ranch and try out his surfboard on Black Point Beach. We took Christopher on a tour of the Crocker Art Museum in Sacramento, UC Davis and the Davis Art Center, and Ellen had lunch with us twice. Now Ellen is in Granada in southern Spain, Ben in Santander in Northern Spain and Christopher is in Bologna, Italy. They have each reported on exciting experiences such as surf boarding before sunrise, braving a storm at sea, and connecting with interesting characters such as an Italian rock star – as well as on their academic pursuits. In addition to getting acclimatized to the local culture and different university styles, they have had to cope with the repercussions of the events of September 11 far from home and family.
Christopher is attending the Universitá degli Studi di Bologna – Europe’s oldest university “where the ghosts of Petrarch, Dante, Copernicus and others roam”. As a Philosophy major with future plans for international law, Christopher is taking classes with impressive titles like Storia dell’Estetica e Fenomenologia and Filosofia dell’India e dell’Asia Orientale. He reports that his professors seem very passionate about what they do, although this does not make them punctual for lectures. Despite the bureaucratic mysteries, “I know I’m in the right place,” writes Christopher.
Ellen Holloway (whose e-mail is ellieingranada) is enrolled in studies toward her degree in Spanish Literature. A high school exchange program in Chile sparked her interest in continuing Spanish, while volunteering at a Davis hospital encouraged her to consider medical school or a career in public health. Ellie seems to have a knack for creating travel opportunities.
Ben carefully considered his options for finding a coastal university in a Spanish speaking country (having spent a year studying in Costa Rica), where he could study toward his double major in Ecology, Behavior and Evolution, and Spanish Studies – while continuing his passion for surfing. At the Universidad de Cantabria in Santander he has found the courses he wanted and the ocean three blocks from the apartment he shares with international students. He put his work experience at a Santa Cruz Deli to good use recently when he helped serve a birthday feast in Basque country. “Surrounded by French Basques who didn’t speak a lick of English, I never felt out of place.”
Jenny Chang (1997-98, U.K.) is still enjoying the research she has been doing at a San Diego biotech company since finishing her Master’s degree. She recently decided to continue her studies toward a Ph.D. For fun she has been swing dancing and playing softball.
Austin Leininger (1998-99, Scotland) graduated in religious Studies with a minor in Classical Dance (ballet). Currently he works as a Senior Technical Writer at Intel during the day and as a pre-seminary intern at an Episcopal church nights and weekends. He hopes to study to become an Episcopal priest and to attain a Ph.D. in Biblical Languages, as well as to return to Scotland. Lacking a dance studio, he is taking Goju Ryu Traditional Okinawan Karate “to hone his balance and poise.” He came to Davis for a visit last New Year’s Day.
Mark Morris (1998-99, Ghana) finished his BA in Visual Arts and a BS in Management Science. He is Visual Arts Coordinator at a gallery in San Diego and works at a restaurant as well. He is considering applying to graduate schools for Master of Fine Arts programs. Mark had two exhibits in San Diego after returning from Africa. Last summer he was in Spain and previous to that he traveled in Peru.
Nicole Wu (1999-2000, France) finished her degree in Economics last June. Back in New York, she took a TV and film acting workshop. She continues dance classes and has added voice lessons. She traveled to Brazil and is now looking for a job.
Andrea Martinez-Calvillo (1999-2000, Mexico) also graduated, but will continue her studies of Latin American Literature and History at the University of Costa Rica. Volunteer work at a secondary school will prepare her for entry into the teaching profession. “I am very excited about this study abroad experience and hope to learn and grow from this travel opportunity as much as I did from my stay in Mexico.”
Shige Itoh (2000-01, Japan), seen in this picture taken by the treasurer Dolf Starreveld in a Tokyo restaurant, returned from Hitotsubashi University in Tokyo in July. “I loved the experience of living in Japan and being immersed in a radically different society.” While finishing up his Management Science and Japanese Studies majors, he has been preparing for the Law School Admissions Test. “I will use my learning experiences from Japan as the foundation for the two honors theses I plan to write.”
Yukio Yukio King (2000-01, Germany) writes that “adjusting to life back here in San Diego took a bit of getting used to. I am in my routine here, but somehow there is something missing. I think it was the idea that every day, every moment, was new.” Having spent his second semester at Berlin’s Humboldt University, Yukio now feels that he “was not done with that city yet” and has submitted a Fulbright application to return to Berlin to study in the Urban and Regional Sociology Program, with a focus on issues of low income housing.
The contributions that each of you have made are extending the education of these ten awardees into the international realm and will do so as well for future scholarship recipients. Because the Fund capital is conservatively invested and has lost only a small fraction of its value this year, we expect that the program will continue at its present level – especially if further donations are received from the generous donors to whom this letter is addressed with gratitude.