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Brandeis senior who works with local homeless receives Marshall Scholarship

Posted by Jaclyn Reiss  November 26, 2012 12:11 PM

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Photo by Charles A. Radin/Brandeis University

Marshall Scholarship winner Elizabeth Stoker and classmate Nate Shammay sold pies last week to raise money for Waltham Group activities.

A Brandeis University senior who founded a program letting Brandeis students donate unused meals from their meal plan to Waltham homeless shelters has won a prestigious scholarship funded by the British government to study at the University of Oxford next year.

Elizabeth Stoker, a native of Arlington, Texas, won a Marshall Scholarship to study theology and Christian ethics in the United Kingdom after she graduates from Brandeis in 2013, according to Brandeis. The all-inclusive scholarship is awarded to about 40 students per year.

Stoker founded the Brandeis: Be Our Guest program in her first semester, which allows students to donate unused guest meals via Aramark to local homeless shelters. She is also an active participant in the university’s Hunger and Homelessness program and sits as a board member at the Community Day Center.

Stoker is the fourth Brandeisian to win the Marshall Scholarship, a program named for Secretary of State George C. Marshall that began as a gesture of gratitude to the United States for assistance received by Britain under the Marshall Plan for reconstruction of Europe after World War II. She joins the ranks of cultural historian Eileen Yeo, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman, and Yeshiva University law professor Martin Stone, according to Brandeis.

While at Brandeis, Stoker has earned a near-perfect grade point average while pursuing a double major in English and sociology and a minor in Near Eastern and Judaic studies, the university said.

She told Brandeis officials that she will pursue a master of philosophy in theology, with a focus on Christian ethics, at the University of Oxford.

“It is my hope that church organizations and interfaith groups that interact with faith communities will draw positive, progressive conclusions from my work, which will result in an improvement in the lives of disabled people,” she told the university.

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Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at jaclyn.reiss@globe.com

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