February 07, 2018

Eastern Michigan University student earns political science fellowship

Research presentations lead to Kangkana Koli being named as a fellow with the American Political Science Association program

YPSILANTI – The American Political Science Association has named an Eastern Michigan University student as a 2018-2019 Minority Fellowship Program Fellow.

Kangkana Koli, a senior majoring in Political Science, has been named as a fellow of the program because of her research in the field.   

The APSA Minority Fellowship Program helps minority students and other underrepresented groups to pursue careers in political science. The program includes helping the students apply for graduate school, finding programs that are tailored to their academic interests and aiding in financial resources.

“The APSA minority student fellowship was made for students like me, who may need some extra help in pursuing a doctoral degree,” Koli said. “The fellowship comes with a letter of support that they send to every graduate school you have applied to, and that makes me feel a little more confident about my chances to get into a good research institute.”

Koli participated in the 2017 Ralph Bunche Summer Institute at Duke University, where she researched the relationship between religious extremists and development. Her findings were presented at conferences across Michigan, including the Michigan Political Science Association Conference.

“After the longest summer and four months of my life, I have successfully submitted applications to 12 political science Ph.D. programs,” Koli said. “My research interests are at the intersection of race, ethnicity and politics, along with comparative politics.”

Koli serves as a student programmer for the Center for Multi-Cultural Affairs at Eastern Michigan.

She said she plans on pursuing a doctoral degree in political science and wants to look deeper into the comparisons of race, politics and ethnicity. Koli has already been accepted into the doctoral program at Purdue.

“I hope to be able to further explore anti-blackness in the Asian community and where these views originate from,” she said. “How much an immigrant’s country of origin affects or shapes their political views in the United States, and something I'm currently working on is how colorism can impact political views toward different Asian Americans.

“My experience as a South Asian immigrant has really shaped my research interests and given me this unique research agenda that I believe was a large factor in me being awarded this fellowship.”

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest university in Michigan. It currently serves 20,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Health and Human Services; Technology, and its graduate school. EMU is regularly recognized by national publications for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website.

Contact Geoff Larcom, glarcom@emich.edu, 734.487.4401

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