Two UAB Clinton Scholars win Critical Languages Scholarships

Two Clinton scholars, UAB juniors will travel to Morocco and Korea to learn the language and culture

Leah BerkebileLeah BerkebileTwo University of Alabama at Birmingham students have received prestigious Critical Languages Scholarships. Leah Berkebile and Yoonhee “Charity” Ryder, both juniors and William Jefferson Clinton Scholars, will study foreign language and culture abroad.

The scholarship is a program of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and has offered intensive overseas study in the critical-need foreign languages of Arabic, Bangla, Hindi, Punjabi, Turkish and Urdu since 2006. Last year, approximately 600 scholarships were awarded for 13 languages.

Yoohnee RyderYoohnee RyderBerkebile, a double major in biology and international studies, will study at the Arab American Language Institute in Tangier, Morocco. The 20-year-old is an Experiential Learning Scholars Program student from Athens, Ala., and plans to practice medicine in the Middle East.

Ryder, a University Honors Program scholar who is majoring in biology and anthropology, will study in Wonju, South Korea. The 20-year-old is from Huntsville and plans to spend a couple of years researching and doing humanitarian work abroad, then pursue her dream of becoming a doctor.