Three Penn students have been awarded Schwarzman Scholarships, which will fund a year of graduate study leading to a master’s degree in global affairs at China’s Tsinghua University for each of them. They are seniors Adedotun Adejare of Albrightsville, Pa., and Johnathan Chen of Shanghai and graduate student Zhongyuan Zeng of Beijing.
The Schwarzman Scholars program is designed to prepare future global leaders to meet to the geopolitical challenges of the 21st century. Founded by Blackstone co-founder Stephen A. Schwarzman, the scholarships aim to create more effective connections between China and the rest of the world.
Adejare, Chen, and Zeng are among 147 candidates from 38 countries and 119 universities. This year, more than 2,880 people applied to the highly selective program.
The Schwarzman Scholars Class of 2020 will begin the program in August of 2019.
Adejare is a senior economics major in the Wharton School, a PennCAP student, and a Wharton Research Scholar, who has overcome a stutter to become an accomplished public speaker. He is the president of the Black Wharton Undergraduate Association, co-speaker chair of the inaugural Black Ivy League Business Conference, and a writer for the Wharton International Business Review.
He hopes to pursue a career in private equity, with a focus on emerging technologies and education.
Enrolled in the Jerome Fisher Management and Technology Program, Chen is a senior earning a dual-degree in electrical engineering from the School of Engineering and Applied Science and in economics from the Wharton School. At Penn, he spearheaded the electronics design of Penn Electric Racing's electric vehicles, one of which broke the American Formula Student acceleration record.
The only undergraduate student to speak at TedxPenn his freshman year, Chen served as the Captain of Penn’s Forensic Speech and Debate, as well as the president of the Engineering Deans' Advisory Board. Chen is also passionate about filmmaking and photography.
After having worked as an intern on one of Tesla Autopilot’s New Technology teams, Chen plans to continue his studies at Schwarzman to learn more about China’s growing influence in different technology spheres.
Zeng will graduate from the School of Design in 2019 with a master’s degree in city planning. At Penn, she founded the Urban China Collective, a global network of scholars and professionals exploring more inclusive, sustainable urban governance strategies.
Concerned about a looming social divide in the Chinese urban society, she interned in a village committee in Beijing and conducted research on urban village renewal schemes. In addition, Zeng has volunteered to serve underprivileged groups, including migrant workers, the homeless, and female inmates.
As a Schwarzman Scholar, she plans to study public policies germane to urbanization and social inclusion in a global context.
Adejare, Chen, and Zeng applied for the Schwarzman Scholarships with assistance from Penn’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships.