Two students earn fellowships to study in Germany

UNL Honors Program students Garrett Allen and Tanner Sorensen have been awarded fellowships from the Deutscher Akademischer Austausch Dienst to study in Germany next year. Allen received a fellowship to conduct independent research and Sorensen received a fellowship to attend a Master's program at a German university.

Allen and Sorensen were participants in UNL's German studies department exchange program Deutsch in Deutschland at Humboldt University in Berlin last year. Both students are from Omaha and will graduate May 4.

Allen, a philosophy major with a German minor, will work at Humboldt University next year. Though he won the DAAD Study Scholarship, he has accepted another scholarship from the Berlin House of Representatives, which also funds a year of study in a German university and is awarded to only 20 students a year. Allen has been conducting undergraduate research on Plato with Harry Ide, associate professor of philosophy, and plans to examine the relationship between the epistemologies of Plato and the 18th-century German philosopher Immanuel Kant.

"My thesis, which I worked on for two years, is about Plato's theory of knowledge: What can we know, what are the objects of knowledge and how do we come to know those things," Allen said. He will also be published in Stance, an undergraduate philosophical journal.

Sorensen, a German major with Russian and Latin minors, has spent much of his undergraduate career interested in languages and linguistics. Sorensen will attend the University of Pottsdam, outside of Berlin, pursuing a master's in linguistics. His interests involve a phenomenon in linguistics called focus, or intonational prominence in language. He will be funded for a full two years.

"I hope to receive further formal training in linguistics and make meaningful contributions to contemporary research," Sorensen said. His previous experiences in Germany have "opened my eyes to the wider academic environment in Europe and to the relevance of linguistics in the international scene."

The DAAD is a private national agency that receives federal and state funding and represents 365 higher education instutitions in Germany. It offers competitive, merit-based grants for study and/or research at accredited German institutions.