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Birkes receives study abroad scholarship

Birkes-Mug.jpgColby Birkes, a second-year political science major, received a $1,500 study abroad scholarship from Pi Kappa Phi International Scholars Program.

Birkes plans to use the financial award this summer to participate in the Canadian Parliamentary Internship program, a five-week program in Ottawa, Canada.

During the internship, Birkes will work in the office of Judy Sgro, a Liberal Party member of Parliament, where he will assist in writing constituent newsletters, press releases and speeches to deliver in the House of Commons. He also will conduct research for a paper on sexual harassment in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

“I have always been interested in government and helping others,” Birkes said. “This internship offers a close and hands-on approach to government that I will value.”

 The Winchester native says he feels very fortunate to earn this scholarship.

 “My parents are paying for two kids in college at the same time. My mom is an elementary school teacher of 30 years. With all of the uncertainty that she is going through with Frankfort, I was hoping to take one more worry off of her shoulders.”

After graduation, Birkes hopes to attend law school. “I have the adamant aspiration to attend Yale Law School. The political science faculty have been amazing and I hope they realize the impact that they have had on me and many others.”

“Colby is one of the most engaged students I’ve had in my classes. He is always on top of the readings and often meets after class for further discussion. This high level of engagement will serve him well during his internship in Canada. I’m confident he will represent Morehead State University well in Ottawa, and will uphold the high standards of Pi Kappa Phi study abroad scholarship recipients,” said Dr. James Masterson, associate professor of government.

Additional information on the Department of History, Philosophy, Politics, International Studies and Legal Studies is available by visiting