Strauss Center News

Updates from the Strauss Center and our affiliated distinguished scholars and fellows


2014 Crook Fellowship Award Recipients Announced

May 12, 2014 |

The Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2014 William H. Crook Fellowship awards. This year’s impressive cohort will be interning across the globe, with placements in Central America, Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and East Asia.

Now in its seventh year, the Crook Fellowship program provides funding for students spending the summer interning with nonprofit organizations focusing on development work throughout the developing world. Since 2008, the program has enabled forty-eight students to travel abroad to pursue internships in the field of development. A number of these students have gone on to work for these institutions or other institutions in their internship field following graduation. Crook Fellow alums now work at the Brookings Institution, Development Gateway, Innovations for Poverty Action, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the U.S. Department of Treasury, and the World Bank.

The fellowships are sponsored by the Strauss Center’s William H. Crook Program in International Affairs, which is dedicated to promoting global economic development and fighting poverty. The program is made possible by a generous gift from Mrs. Eleanor Crook in honor of her late husband, Ambassador William H. Crook. Ambassador Crook was a prominent public figure in Texas politics and a pioneer in global development, establishing the U.S. Office of Economic Opportunity at the request of President Lyndon B. Johnson and serving as national director of Volunteers in Service to America, now known as AmeriCorps.

The 2014 Crook Fellowships have been awarded to the following seven students:

John Dinning will be interning with Save the Children in El Salvador this summer. His duties will center on assessing the impact of past and current Save the Children initiatives through the Monitoring, Evaluation, Accountability, and Learning program.

Annie DuPre will be spending her summer in Cape Town, South Africa with the Economic Policy Research Institute. While there, she will contribute quantitative analysis as well as research on and policy recommendations for issues of social protection and poverty reduction throughout South Africa.

Rachel Markowitz will be working with Search for Common Ground in Kigali, Rwanda. Rachel will contribute to a number of the organization’s initiatives focused on building dialogue about conflict management strategies through media outlets, especially radio and television.

Meredith Maulsby is interning in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia with USAID this summer. She will be working with a USAID NGO contractor, FHI360, on a project aimed at expanding family planning initiates to underserved populations in the country.

Benjamin Mauro will be working with Humanure Power, an NGO that seeks to implement sustainable sanitation infrastructure by building community toilet blocks in rural India. He will be based in Bihar, where he will coordinate Humanure Power’s initiatives with local government officials, with the aim of scaling up the project to additional regions.

Peter Morrison will be spending the summer in Dakar, Senegal with an internship with the Peace Corps. He will be splitting his time between two primary projects: analyzing 2013 project impact data from Peace Corps volunteers throughout the country, and conducting research on the implementation barriers to pre-existing projects.

Robbie Paras will be interning in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia this summer with the Asia Foundation. She will be working on three interrelated projects, focusing on women’s entrepreneurship and economic empowerment, in partnership with the National Committee on Gender Equality, the Mongolian Women’s Farmer’s Association, and Ulaanbaatar’s Economic Development Agency.

The Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law at the University of Texas at Austin was founded to fulfill the legacy of its remarkable namesake by bridging the divides between academia, government, and the private sector and by integrating an array of disciplines, including law, history, political science, technology, and economics. It does so in service of its mission to develop non-partisan, policy-relevant insights and solutions for the most pressing international security challenges of the 21st century. For more information on the Strauss Center, please visit