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Liberty + Leadership News: October 29


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!

Applications Now Open for Prestigious Joseph Rago Memorial Fellowship for Excellence in Journalism

Applications for the 2022-23 TFAS Joseph Rago Memorial Fellowship for Excellence in Journalism are now open. Early-career journalists are encouraged to apply for the opportunity to intern with The Wall Street Journal’s editorial team by Jan. 11, 2022.

Illustration of Joe Rago Courtesy of The Wall Street Journal/Dow Jones

The Fellowship was established in 2018 in honor of the late Joseph Rago, a Pulitzer prize winning journalist at The Journal who passed away in 2017 at the age of 34. He graduated from Dartmouth College in 2005 and joined The Wall Street Journal as an intern, rising through the ranks until joining the editorial board.

Journalists with less than five years of experience are invited to apply for the fourth annual Fellowship, which includes a nine-month internship with The Wall Street Journal, a salary of approximately $5,000 per month from TFAS and participation in the extensive network of TFAS Journalism Fellows and events. Inaugural recipient Elliot Kaufman says the experience he gained through the Fellowship encouraged him to join The Journal full time in 2019.

The Joseph Rago Fellowship made me a full member of the team at the best paper and opinion section in the world, The Wall Street Journal editorial page. We get to work on the biggest issues of the day – every day… I don’t think there’s a better job for a young journalist, writer or editor than the Rago Fellowship.” – Elliot Kaufman, Rago ’18

“The Joseph Rago Fellowship made me a full member of the team at the best paper and opinion section in the world, The Wall Street Journal editorial page,” Kaufman said, “We get to work on the biggest issues of the day – every day… I don’t think there’s a better job for a young journalist, writer or editor than the Rago Fellowship.”

Learn more about the Rago Fellowship and how to apply at TFAS.org/RagoApps22.

TFAS Students Follow in Their Parents’ Footsteps: John and Jack Lee

John Lee ’85 still remembers packing his car and driving from New Jersey to Washington on his own after completing his sophomore year at Villanova University. As a participant of TFAS’s Public Policy + Economics program track, John found himself immersed in a new environment with a diverse group of peers from the U.S. and abroad who contributed to his eye-opening TFAS experience in Washington.

John Lee and his classmates visit the U.S. Capitol building during their summer in Washington.

“The program was a platform for a great summer experience,” said John. “I remember the relationships that were built, the camaraderie between all of us in class and having that bond with people from all around the country and the world that The Fund for American Studies program provided. For me, it was really the overall TFAS experience, the friendships and the life-changing kind of approach to the program that was most important.”

After graduating from Villanova in 1987, John moved back to New Jersey. He has worked in the financial industry for over 30 years and now serves as the senior managing director of wealth management for Northern Trust in New York City. John has three children, Campbell, Jack and Abigail, who have all participated in programs offered through TFAS high school division, the Foundation for Teaching Economics.

Jack Lee listens intently to the summer 2021 Neal B. Freeman Lecture featuring Jason Riley.

John’s middle child, Jack Lee ’21, took the leap and followed in his father’s footsteps to attend a TFAS summer program in Washington, D.C. Jack participated the Business + Government Relations track and is currently a senior at Elon University.

“My dad would always describe TFAS as one of the most influential summers of his life, so I always had it in the back of my mind,” Jack said. “And after looking into the program, I knew it was something I wanted to do too.”

Learn more about John and Jack Lee at TFAS.org/Lee.


Post of the Week

TFAS is growing. Please check out TFAS.org/Careers for open positions and spread the word to your networks.


TFAS Manager of Continuing Education Programs Ryan Wolfe writes about how exercising free speech virtuously can help protect it in The Federalist.

TFAS Trustee The Hon. Paula Dobriansky reflects on the impact of the late former Secretary of State Colin Powell in The Wall Street Journal.

Alexandra Seymour, PPF ’18, is a visiting fellow at the National Security Institute.

Melanie Fonder Kaye ’98 is the deputy assistant to the Secretary of Defense for Strategic Engagement at the Department of Defense.

2021 Novak Fellow Kenny Xu shares how the Alumni Free Speech Alliance is helping protect free speech on college campuses in the U.S. in an interview with Fox & Friends.

Hannah Specogna ’20 is a government affairs specialist at the Internet Association.

Nia Kamau ’21 explains how her experience with TFAS in Washington, D.C., encouraged her to “make change for the better” in a blog post for SMU Tower Center.

Faith Bottum, Rago ’21, reports on the docent program at The Art Institute of Chicago being overhauled in the so-called name of “civic-minded diversity” in a piece for The Wall Street Journal.

Faysal Itani ’03, ’06 co-authors a piece about how the ongoing crisis in Lebanon poses challenges for Europe in a piece for Foreign Policy.

Caroline Decker ’92 is now the head of government affairs for leading engineering and professional services consultancy WSP USA.

Kristin Tate, Novak ’19, writes about reckless federal spending and inflation in The Hill.

Oriana Pawlyk ’10 received the “Best Young Defence Journalist” award from Defence Media.

Connect with @TFASorg on social media!


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