Three promising leaders from Yale College named Marshall scholars

Yale seniors Michael Chen, Bayan Galal, and Alex Hu are among the 40 winners of the scholarship, which funds up to three years of graduate study in the U.K.
Michael Chen, Bayan Galal, and Alex Hu

Michael Chen, Bayan Galal, and Alex Hu

Three Yale seniors — Michael Chen, Bayan Galal, and Alex Hu — are among the 40 winners of prestigious Marshall Scholarships, which fund up to three years of graduate study in the United Kingdom for Americans poised to become leaders in their fields.

The recipients, who are considered among the most accomplished undergraduate students and recent college graduates, were selected from 951 applicants representing academic institutions across the United States. Funded by the British government and other British institutions, the scholarships allow recipients to pursue graduate degrees in almost any subject at any university in the United Kingdom.

Whether it is the war in Ukraine or global challenges from the effects of climate change, Marshall Scholars continue to work to help address global challenges head on,” said Dame Karen Pierce, the British ambassador to the United States. “The British government is excited to support these future leaders of American society as they begin the next stage of their lives studying at some of the UK’s top academic institutions.”

Rebekah Westphal, director of the Office of Fellowships and Funding and assistant dean of Yale College, said this year marks the first time since 2016 that Yale has had more than two Marshall Scholars.

The three winners are outstanding leaders and scholars,” she said.

Michael Chen ’23, of Branford College, studies ethnicity, race, and migration and political science at Yale. As an Edward A. Bouchet Fellow at Yale, his research and senior thesis focus on New Haven’s Elm City Resident Card, the first municipal ID in the country for undocumented immigrants. He was a Liman Undergraduate Summer Fellow at Yale Law School and most recently interned at the Legal Aid Society’s Immigration Law Unit. On campus, he has held various mentorship roles, including serving as a first-year counselor and peer liaison for the Asian American Cultural Center. As a Marshall Scholar, he will pursue an M.Sc. degree in migration studies at the University of Oxford.

Bayan Galal ’23, of Grace Hopper College, is a pre-med student double majoring in molecular, cellular, and developmental biology and global affairs. She is a member of the Global Health Scholars Program at the Jackson School of Global Affairs and the Brady-Johnson Program in Grand Strategy. She previously served as Yale College Council president, where she was the first Muslim and first Arab student body president in Yale’s 320-year history and in the history of the Ivy League. During her tenure, she spearheaded large-scale policy changes in the areas of academics, financial accessibility, and health. She has pursued her interest in health care accessibility as an intern for the International Rescue Committee, the Council on Foreign Relations, and Save the Children, and was a patient care coordinator at the HAVEN Free Clinic. She also served as an emergency medical technician. In addition, she has been a research assistant at the Yale School of Medicine, the Yale School of Public Health, and the Jackson School of Global Affairs, and has published on issues such as COVID-19 vaccine uptake, health care insurance, and vaccine hesitancy. She plans to pursue a career in both medicine and global health, and will pursue a M.Sc. degree in international health and tropical medicine at the University of Oxford.

Alex Hu ’23, of Timothy Dwight College, is a humanities major. He participated in the Directed Studies Program. Hu is writing his senior thesis on the history of Yale’s Humanities Program and the evolution of the undergraduate curriculum. On campus, he started new conversations about American foreign policy as the founder of the Nicholas J. Spykman Fellowship and the Yale chapter of the Alexander Hamilton Society. He has spent his summers interning and/or studying with the Hudson Institute and the Institute for the Study of War. As a Marshall Scholar, he plans to study the geopolitics of the internet at King’s College London through M.A. programs in war studies and geopolitics, resources, and territory.

The Marshall Scholarships were created by an act of the British Parliament in 1953 in gratitude for former U.S. Secretary of State General George Marshall and the assistance of the U.S. under the Marshall Plan. The 2022 class of Marshall Scholars will take up their studies at 21 different institutions starting next September.

The next deadlines for the Marshall Scholarship are in August, 2023. Interested students should contact the Office of Fellowships and Funding for more information.

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