Peru State College
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News Release

Peru Grad, Columbus Native Awarded National Fellowship


Dr. Spencer Davis, Trevor Shalon and Dr. Sara Crook
(left to right): Dr. Spencer Davis, Trevor Shalon, Dr. Sara Crook

(Peru, Neb.) Columbus native and Peru State College (PSC) graduate Trevor James Shalon has been awarded a James Madison Fellowship by the James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation of Washington, D.C. in its 18th annual fellowship competition.

According to his award letter, Shalon was selected because of his high academic achievement, strong promise of completing a master’s degree program, and convincing dedication to the teaching of young people in secondary schools.

The son of Marvin and Susan Shalon of Columbus, Shalon graduated summa cum laude from Peru State in May with dual degrees in 7-12 Social Studies Education and History. He served as vice president and secretary of Phi Alpha Theta, was a contributing writer for the Peru State Times and was a peer tutor for Student Success Services. Shalon interned with National History Day at the University of Maryland in summer 2008 and Project Vote Smart in Montana in 2009. This fall he will begin graduate school at the University of Nebraska.

PSC History Professor Dr. Sara Crook said, “As his academic advisor and professor, I am particularly proud of Trevor Shalon and the initiative he has taken throughout his collegiate career. When Trevor came to Peru State College he quickly became an active participant in a variety of campus activities and assumed a leadership role in the classroom with his peers. His initiative in seeking two outstanding internships for the past two summers has been a key launching point for this honor from the James Madison Fellowship. He is keenly deserving of this high honor.”

Shalon said, “I appreciate all of the skills Peru State College has provided me that have allowed me to reach far beyond what I thought my potential was. I want to specifically thank Dr. Sara Crook for always being a strong mentor and Alice Holtz for editing my essay what seemed like 20 times. This fellowship gives me the opportunity to continue my two passions: education and history.”

Shalon’s fellowship is one of only 58 awarded nationally in 2010. James Madison Fellowships support further study of American history by college graduates who aspire to become teachers of American history, American government and social studies in the country’s secondary schools.

Named in honor of the fourth president of the United States and “Father of the Constitution and Bill of Rights,” the fellowship provides up to $24,000 toward a master’s degree. The graduate program must include a concentration of courses on the history and principles of the U.S. Constitution. Recipients are required to teach American history or social studies in a secondary school for at least one year for each year of fellowship support.

The fellowship is funded by income from a trust fund in the Treasury of the United States and from additional private gifts, corporate contributions and foundation grants. The intent of the award is to recognize promising and distinguished teachers, and to strengthen their knowledge of the origins and development of American constitutional government - thus exposing the nation’s secondary school student to accurate knowledge of the nation’s Constitutional heritage.

Founded by an act of Congress in 1986, the James Madison Memorial Fellowship Foundation is an independent establishment of the executive branch of the federal government. In addition to offering fellowships, the Foundation undertakes other activities related to secondary school education and the Constitution’s history. Additional information can be found at