Norwich University Student Earns National Award to Study Abroad


May 5, 2017

Norwich University student David Heinsohn, 21, of Alexandria, Va., has been awarded a Boren Scholarship to study in Taiwan during the 2017-18 academic year.

A rising senior (Class of 2018) and member of the Corps of Cadets, Heinsohn is currently pursuing a double degree in International Studies and Chinese (Mandarin) at Norwich University. He will study Mandarin at the Republic of China Military Academy (ROCMA) in Kaohsiung City, where all of his classes will be taught in Mandarin during the fall 2017 semester.

Heinsohn (pictured, center, in 2016 in Taiwan) is a Sergeant First Class, Rook Platoon Sergeant, who will hold the rank of Captain at ROCMA. He has studied in mainland China the past two summers and will return there this month under Project GO, an initiative of the Defense Language and National Security Education Office. That trip will be his third study abroad under Project GO, experience that contributed to his candidacy to receive the Boren Award to study in Taiwan for the fall semester. He hopes to become proficient in Mandarin, which he began studying his first year at Norwich. He is planning to commission into the Army after graduation in May 2018 and appreciates the opportunity this provides for employment with the federal government as well as to further challenge himself.

“At the end of the day I really just want to meet new people, go to new places, and learn more about myself by getting out of my comfort zone” Heinsohn said.

Norwich has a long history with ROCMA, hosting cadets on campus and sending Norwich cadets to study at the Chinese military college over the years.

David L. Boren Scholarships and Fellowships are sponsored by the National Security Education Program (NSEP), a major federal initiative designed to build a broader and more qualified pool of U.S. citizens with foreign language and international skills. Boren Awards provide U.S. undergraduate and graduate students with resources and encouragement to acquire language skills and experience in countries critical to the future security and stability of our nation. In exchange for funding, Boren award recipients agree to work in the federal government for a period of at least one year.

“The National Security Education Program,” according to Dr. Michael A. Nugent, NSEP Director, “is helping change the U.S. higher education system and the way Americans approach the study of foreign languages and cultures.”

This year, the Institute of International Education, which administers the awards on behalf of NSEP, received 791 applications from undergraduate students for the Boren Scholarship and 194 were awarded; 340 graduate students applied for the Boren Fellowship and 114 were awarded.  Boren Scholars and Fellows will live in 44 countries throughout Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, Eurasia, Latin America, and the Middle East. They will study 36 different languages. The most popular languages include Arabic, Mandarin, Russian, Portuguese, Japanese, Swahili, and Korean.

“To continue to play a leadership role in the world, it is vital that America’s future leaders have a deep understanding of the rest of the world,” says University of Oklahoma President David Boren, who as a U.S. Senator was the principal author of the legislation that created the National Security Education Program and the scholarships and fellowships that bear his name. “As we seek to lead through partnerships, understanding of other cultures and languages is absolutely essential.”

Since 1994, over 6,000 students have received Boren Awards. Boren Scholars and Fellows represent a vital pool of highly motivated individuals who wish to work in the federal national security arena, and program alumni are contributing to the critical missions of agencies throughout the federal government. An independent not-for-profit founded in 1919, IIE is among the world’s largest and most experienced international education and exchange organizations. Undergraduate and graduate students interested in applying for the Boren Awards should contact IIE at or visit

Heinsohn is the second Norwich University student to receive the Boren award.

“Norwich University has a vision of being global in perspective, and we know study abroad can be life changing,” Interim Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Joseph Byrne said. “We are proud to have David Heinsohn develop a global perspective by studying Mandarin Chinese at the Republic of China Military Academy.”

For more information about the Boren award, contact: Jeff Cary, Outreach & Recruitment Manager at (202) 326-7733 or

About Norwich University

Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) 

In fulfillment of Norwich’s mission to train and educate today’s students to be tomorrow’s global leaders and captains of industry, the Forging the Future campaign is committed to creating the best possible learning environment through state-of-the-art academics and world-class facilities. Norwich University will celebrate its bicentennial in 2019. Learn more about the campaign and how to participate in the “Year of Transformation” here:    

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