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Liberty + Leadership News: April 9, 2021


We hope you enjoy these top news stories about TFAS activities, alumni and events this week. Please visit us on social media for additional up-to-the-moment TFAS news and information and sign up to receive weekly updates.

TFAS alumni, staff and faculty continue to make headlines. Read news, analysis and updates by visiting this week’s “Quick Links.”

Applications Open for the 2021-22 TFAS Public Policy Fellowship

The Fund for American Studies (TFAS) is now accepting applications for the 2021-22 Public Policy Fellowship. This Fellowship provides an opportunity for young leaders who are passionate about public policy to learn and network in Washington, D.C. It is designed for those with two to ten years’ professional experience, and the curriculum for the Fellowship focuses on “The Experiment in Self-Government.”
The application deadline is June 1.

Colleen Harmon, PPF ’20, engages in a lively discussion at the Spring 2021 Public Policy Fellows retreat in Charlottesville, Virginia.

The goal of the Fellowship is to provide events that allow young professionals to foster strong connections with peers working in public policy while building an understanding of the principles of government through deliberation and debate. Fellows will participate in academic discussion sessions while networking with key public policy leaders, academics and journalists.

“The Experiment in Self-Government” allows Fellows to examine the challenges and questions a free society must address in order to flourish along with the unique advantages it can enjoy. The program places particular emphasis on the ideas and seminal texts of the American Founding. Intern program manager for The Heritage Foundation’s Young Leaders Program and current Fellow Colleen Harmon, PPF ’20, believes the Public Policy Fellowship has challenged her and helped her gain confidence in herself as a policy professional.

“The TFAS Public Policy Fellowship challenged me to find my voice,” Harmon shared. Surrounded as I am by brilliant peers, I know I must be prepared and speak well, but I must also be open to having my mind changed. It has given me the confidence to engage with my peers in open and pleasant conversations about American political philosophy, public policy and the future of the country. I have benefited immensely from this experience and I am so grateful.”

To learn more about the 2021-22 TFAS Public Policy Fellowship, visit TFAS.org/PPFApps21.

Uprooted – Grace Olmstead Discusses New Book in Exclusive Alumni Webinar

Last month, TFAS alumna and newly-published author Grace Olmstead, Novak ’15, sat down for an interview with Director of the Robert Novak Journalism Fellowship Program Dan McCarthy for an in depth look at her writing process, the impact of the Novak Fellowship and the importance of local stories and folk culture.

Grace Olmstead, Novak ’15, shared insights on her new book, “Uprooted,” in an exclusive interview with TFAS.

Olmstead, now a journalist in Washington, D.C., left her small farm town of Emmett, Idaho, to pursue higher education and a writing career several years ago. In her newly released book, “Uprooted: Recovering the Legacy of the Places We’ve Left Behind,” she examines the heartbreaking consequences of “uprooting,” and what that means for herself, her hometown and for the greater heartland of America.

During the interview, Olmstead gave attendees a look into her Fellowship project and how the award influenced all of her writings – including her new book. She shared her desires to tell the firsthand stories of the declining small family farms throughout the nation, to understand this reality better, and to provide insight on the American farming experience.

“The Fund for American Studies made that project possible and gave me the time, space and funds to begin the research that then eventually led me homeward to take a much more focused look at how all of these things affected a particular group of people in a particular region – and that is what my book is,” she said.

Read more and watch a recording of the event at TFAS.org/OlmsteadRecap.

Post of the Week



Helen Andrews, Novak ’17, discusses the legacy of the boomer generation with Jill Filipovic on the Ezra Klein Show.

Katherine Mangu-Ward, Novak ’05, and Peter Suderman, Novak ’10, co-host an episode of the Reason Roundtable podcast on voting restrictions, high-speed train developments and vaccine passports.

Christopher Fortes ’20 shared on LinkedIn that he will begin his graduate studies at Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) this fall.

Amanda Panchery ’19 wrote a book about her 30 day journey listening to God titled “Listen: Finding peace, love and God.”

Blaise Misztal ’00, PPF ’09, co-authors a piece about the Iran nuclear deal in The Hill.

Anna Chorniy’s ’07, ’08 graduate research on public health is featured by the Institute for Humane Studies.

Zahra Hankir ’06 writes in Guernica about what it’s like for generations of Lebanese people to leave Lebanon.

Matthew Walther, Novak ’16, writes about civil discourse in The American Conservative.

Kyle Wolfley ’08 writes about the importance of soft power competition with China for the Modern War Institute.

Tony Mecia ’92, ’93, Novak ’01, has a piece in the Charlotte Ledger about the lessons we can learn from the 1918-19 Spanish flu pandemic as we recover from COVID-19.

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