Wood County woman to study in Jordan

Quinn Hartleroad

PARKERSBURG — Quinn Hartleroad of Wood County is one of seven West Virginia University students who have been awarded the Boren Scholarship, enabling them to study languages in areas of the world that are critical to U.S. interests, according to WVU.

Hartleroad, of Walker, a 2012 graduate of Parkersburg High School, will leave in September for Jordan, where she will study the Arabic language for nine months. She is the daughter of Jane and Kevin Hartleroad.

She will study Arabic at the Qasid Arabic Institute in Amman, Jordan.

Hartleroad, a senior international studies major, is a former Critical Language Scholarship recipient, and has studied in Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Jordan. She will pursue a career working on U.S. Middle East policy with the goal of becoming a Foreign Service Officer.

“I am passionate about learning Arabic and about Middle Eastern history, politics, and culture so this scholarship is vital to my career goals,” Hartleroad said in a story about the Boren Scholarship written by WVU. “The federal service requirement is one of the main reasons that I applied for this scholarship, and being proficient in Arabic will likely be a requirement or preferred skill, for many of the jobs I will apply for after graduation.”

“The Boren Scholarship is highly competitive with hundreds of applications from across the country,” said David Hauser, teaching associate professor and Boren Scholar adviser. “WVU often has students chosen but the number of awards this year recognizes the strength of our programs especially in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences.”

Hartleroad said she traveled to Bahrain over spring break 2014 with a delegation of other female WVU students to visit the Royal University for Women in Manama, Bahrain. When she returned to the U.S., she changed her major to International Studies and began taking Arabic classes.

She was awarded a Critical Language Scholarship to study Arabic in Madaba, Jordan for two months during the Summer of 2015. Hartleroad spent the Fall 2015 semester studying abroad at the American University of Sharjah in the United Arab Emirates.

“Upon my return to the U.S., in June 2018, I will graduate from WVU and begin searching for a job to fulfill the NSEP (National Security Education Program) Federal Service Requirement that is an integral part of the Boren Scholarship,” Hartleroad said in an email.

“I hope to eventually work for the U.S. Department of State as a Foreign Service Officer. I spent the Fall 2016 interning with the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., and the experience solidified my interest in pursuing a career at State,” she said.

Hartleroad said Arabic is a challenging language to learn and has its own alphabet.

“I have a lot to learn,” she said. “I am excited (about going to Jordan again). It is a great opportunity.”

Hartleroad said Jordan has many historical sites to visit, including the archaeological site of Petra.

Boren Scholarships, an initiative of the National Security Education Program, provide funding opportunities for U.S. undergraduate students to study less commonly taught languages in world regions critical to U.S. interests and underrepresented in study abroad, including Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East, WVU said.

In exchange for funding, Boren Scholars commit to working in the federal government for at least one year after graduation, WVU said.