Home » News » Eight North Carolina College Students Receive Prestigious DeJoy-Wos Scholarships to Participate in TFAS Virtual Summer

Eight North Carolina College Students Receive Prestigious DeJoy-Wos Scholarships to Participate in TFAS Virtual Summer


The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) is pleased to announce this year’s DeJoy-Wos scholarship recipients for our summer 2020 academic internship program. North Carolina business leader Louis DeJoy and his wife, former U.S. Ambassador Dr. Aldona Wos have provided $100,000 in scholarship funding to enable North Carolina college students to participate in the TFAS Virtual Summer, an interactive online program that connects students across the United States with virtual internships in Washington, D.C. and courses with academic credit provided through George Mason University. 

Louis DeJoy delivers remarks during a TFAS scholarship fundraising dinner in 2014.

In the third year of a five-year gift, funded through the Louis DeJoy and Aldona Wos Family Foundation, full and partial scholarships are awarded to North Carolina students, with priority given to students with financial need. In addition to internships and courses, students will participate in a one-on-one mentoring program, professional development seminars, guest lectures by top policy experts, career exploration panels, small group discussions, site briefings with key government leaders and virtual networking events. 

I am grateful to be a recipient of the Louis DeJoy and Aldona Wos Family Foundation Scholarship because it is giving me a chance to expand my horizons and create connections that I can use in the future.” – Anna Muckenfuss, Appalachian State University

DeJoy-Wos Scholar Liliana Vitale ’18 (far right) visits the tomb of George Washington with TFAS classmates during a visit to Mount Vernon.

DeJoy is the former chairman and chief executive officer of New Breed Logistics, a major employer in the Triad region, which he merged with XPO Logistics in 2014. He is currently the president of Greensboro-based LDJ Global Strategies. Dr. Wos served as ambassador to Estonia from 2004 to 2006, and from 2013 to 2015 she was head of the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services. As of May 2017, Wos serves as vice-chairwoman of the President’s Commission on White House Fellowships.

Over the past 15 years, DeJoy and Wos have provided scholarship assistance to enable more than 100 North Carolina and 48 Estonian students to participate in TFAS summer programs. DeJoy said he’s pleased to support these students because of the program’s focus on developing our world’s future leaders. 

Dr. Aldona Wos, former U.S. ambassador to Estonia, often provides guest lectures for TFAS students.

“Preparing today’s young people to be honorable leaders is the surest way to promote American values and economic prosperity in the future,” DeJoy said. “The programs of TFAS develop well-rounded leaders who make a difference on campus, in their state capitals and at the highest levels of government.”

TFAS President Roger Ream ’76 agreed that these scholarships promote the TFAS mission of teaching liberty and leadership to rising generations. 

“We continue to be grateful for these DeJoy-Wos scholarships, which will allow talented students to learn more about the key institutions of American government,” Ream said. “These scholarships will change young lives and help instill key values in the next generation of leaders.”

Donald M. Bishop of the Public Diplomacy Council meets with DeJoy-Wos scholar Dalia Namak ’18 during a small group briefing on public diplomacy at TFAS Headquarters.

Scholarship recipient and Appalachian State University student Anna Muckenfuss said she is most looking forward to the lasting connections she will build during her summer with TFAS.

“I am grateful to be a recipient of the Louis DeJoy and Aldona Wos Family Foundation Scholarship because it is giving me a chance to expand my horizons and create connections that I can use in the future,” Muckenfuss said. “I am looking forward to participating in the program in a few weeks and can’t wait to join the ranks of a talented group of alumni.”

Fellow scholarship awardee Sherman Witcher also shared his excitement for the TFAS Virtual Summer. A rising junior at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Witcher will be virtually interning with the National Automatic Merchandising Association.

2018 DeJoy-Wos scholars celebrate a successful summer in Washington, D.C. at the TFAS Closing Ceremony.

“What excites me most about this program is the ability to work with a trade association and observe the inner workings of business from the side of governmental affairs,” Witcher explained. “Both the TFAS program and the Louis DeJoy and Aldona Wos Family Foundation helped me secure this opportunity through their guidance and financial support, which I undoubtedly believe will aid me in my career and personal development.”

This summer, TFAS programs will host more than 700 high school and college students from across the U.S. and around the world. Program graduates will join a global network of 42,000 TFAS alumni who are leaders in politics, government, public policy, business, philanthropy and the media. Look out for more news on the upcoming TFAS Virtual Summer, which begins on June 8 with a week of virtual welcome events, guest lectures and social activities. 



Laura Horton

Education: Wake Forest University
Major: Communications
Internship: kglobal Public Relations

Laura Horton just completed her junior year. She is a marketing and communications fellow for DeacsDecide, a campus-wide political engagement project. Laura has interned for Ted Budd for Congress, WFU athletic communications department and the Office of Sarah Jones, UK Shadow Housing Minister and Member of Parliament for Croydon Central. On campus, she is involved in student government, student advising and the pre-law council. Laura is a member of Alpha Delta Pi sorority, Phi Alpha Delta pre-law fraternity and Alpha Kappa Psi professional business fraternity. She studied politics in London during the spring 2019 semester and she studied French in Tours, France, during summer 2019. Laura is passionate about relationship building and community engagement.

Sherman Witcher

Education: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Major: Finance
Internship: National Automatic Merchandising Association

Sherman Witcher just completed his sophomore year at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill after transferring from Virginia Western Community College. While at VWCC, Sherman participated in an internship program through Roanoke-based nonprofit Total Action for Progress, during which he filed income taxes for low-earning households. Upon arriving at UNC, he pursued his interest in finance by joining the Undergraduate Finance Society and enrolling in the Investment Banking Bootcamp to expand his knowledge of corporate valuation and financing. Sherman hopes to work in multinational finance or consulting upon graduation, and believes that TFAS will equip him with the resources to gain relevant experience in these fields. In addition to his career aspirations, Sherman also takes an interest in music, playing guitar and producing instrumentals, and has added a  music minor to accompany his business studies.

Brittany Broome

Education: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Internship: Islamic Relief USA

Brittany Broome will graduate a semester early in December 2020 from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. On campus, she participates in various activities including Phi Alpha Delta International Pre-Law Fraternity, Student Action with Farmworkers, and The Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Society. Brittany has also worked as an undergraduate legal research assistant at UNC’s law school on the prosecutors and politics project and currently is a server at Top of the Hill Restaurant and Brewery. Through her studies and other extracurricular activities, she has discovered a passion for international relations and foreign affairs studies. This interest led her to spend the fall 2019 semester studying abroad in Milan, Italy. Once she graduates from UNC Chapel Hill, Brittany plans to work in the world of public policy before she pursues a master’s degree in foreign affairs jointly with a degree in law. She hopes to use this to build a career as an international human rights lawyer. In her free time, Brittany enjoys reading, attending classes at Title Boxing Club, visiting museums and art galleries, and traveling.

Aaron Sugarman

Education: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Major: Political Science, Peace, War and Defense Studies
Internship: International Center for Terrorism Studies

Aaron Sugarman just completed his second year at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill studying political science and peace, war and defense. During the summer of 2019, he studied abroad at King’s College London where he took classes on international relations and interned with the Royal United Services Institute for Defense and Security Studies (RUSI). At RUSI, Aaron worked with several research fellows to complete literature reviews in the areas of 5G cybersecurity vulnerabilities and the threats of ISIS foreign fighters in Kurdish camps. At Chapel Hill, he worked as an arts and culture assistant editor with The Daily Tar Heel and now is pursuing investigative reporting. Aaron is broadly interested in foreign affairs and national security, but is specifically focused on cybersecurity and counterterrorism.

Brent Van Vliet

Education: University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Major: Political Science and Global Studies
Internship: International Foundation for Electoral Systems

Brent van Vliet is a recent graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, with degrees in political science and global studies with a focus in global trade and economics, as well as a minor in Spanish. He has focused much of his studies on the history and political economy of the European Union, and plans to attend graduate school in the fall to continue to pursue his interest in European integration. During the fall of his junior year, Brent studied abroad in Sevilla, Spain, taking classes on Spanish politics, culture and economics at Universidad de Sevilla. Brent has served as undergraduate president of European Horizons at Carolina, a student think tank focused on political and economic issues within the European Union and the transatlantic relationship. Brent has also served as the director general of the University of North Carolina Model United Nations Conference, leading the organization of a collegiate Model U.N. conference that brought 250 students from across the country to UNC for a weekend-long conference in November 2019. Since February 2019 Brent has been a reporter for The Daily Tar Heel, UNC’s independent student newspaper, covering state and local politics.  

Joshua Davis 

Education: Campbell University
Major: Journalism
Internship: Radio America

Joshua Davis just completed his sophomore year. Joshua has served on campus as a news anchor and producer for Campbell Now News, a video news broadcast. He’s also been a staff writer and editor-in-chief of the Campbell Times, a student-led newspaper on campus. Joshua also has experience in video production working as a camera operator, technical director and director at Campbell for ESPN+, covering football, basketball, baseball and other sports. 

Anna Muckenfuss

Education: Appalachian State University
Major: Journalism
Internship: Al Arabiya Television

Anna Muckenfuss just completed her junior year. She likes to be creative with writing and has written four novels. Her goal is to write a screenplay that becomes a movie. Anna has worked as a news reporter and video editor at the Appalachian, the student newspaper for Appalachian State University. She has also worked for the Appalachian Weekly News as the senior news anchor. She is interested in becoming a TV news reporter after graduation. Her dream job is to become a TV news anchor or a meteorologist.

Jacqueline Park

Education: Appalachian State University
Major: Journalism
Internship: The Washington Times

Jackie Park is a rising senior at Appalachian State University and editor-in-chief of The Appalachian, the school’s student-run newspaper. She also works at 90.5 WASU, Appalachian State’s student-run radio station, as a DJ and for the news team.


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