Duke grad wins Gates Cambridge scholarship

Posted February 16, 2010 12:19 p.m. EST

— A 2009 Duke University graduate is among 29 people to receive a Gates Cambridge Scholarship, which covers the full cost to study at Cambridge University in England, officials said Tuesday.

Paula Rosine Long, a native of Carrboro, plans to pursue a master’s degree in modern Middle Eastern studies at Cambridge. At Duke, she majored in English and won both the prestigious Faculty Scholar’s Award and a highly competitive Benenson grant for a project in the arts, which she plans to pursue in Beirut.

While at Duke, Long led an organization committed to dialog between Arabs, Jews, Muslims and Israelis to promote peace and understanding. She also was involved with a nonprofit that benefits children with life-threatening illnesses and with women’s rights organizations in the United States and Jordan.

The Gates Cambridge Scholarship is awarded to outstanding graduate students from outside the United Kingdom. The scholarship is funded by a $210 million donation from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation in October 2000.

Scholarships are awarded on the basis of a person's “intellectual ability, leadership capacity and desire to use their knowledge to contribute to society throughout the world by providing service to their communities and applying their talents and knowledge to improve the lives of others,” according to the program’s Web site.