Meet the Schwarzman Scholars Admissions Team

Starting this month, members of the Admissions Team will hit the road to recruit the next class of Schwarzman Scholars. The team is led by Dr. Robert Garris, Director of Global Admissions and Strategic Initiatives, and Dr. David Pan, Executive Dean, Schwarzman College. Our officers in New York and China will be hosting a series of presentations, webinars, and one-on-one conversations at universities, think tanks, and many other organizations around the world.

The schedule for the Global Admissions Team visits can be found on our webpage. We invite you all to take part in these events and share them with your networks of young innovators and future leaders. These activities are a unique opportunity to learn more about the Schwarzman Scholars program and our selection process.

The application for the 2020-2021 academic year is now open to Chinese candidates (those that hold passports from Mainland China, Hong Kong, Taiwan or Macao). The deadline to apply is May 2019. Apply here. The U.S./Global application will launch here in April 2019 and the deadline to apply is September 2019.

Schwarzman Scholars Admissions Team:

Arlie Slonim

Prior to joining Schwarzman Scholars, Arlie was a Manager at the United States Chamber of Commerce in Washington, D.C. and was responsible for day-to-day operations of the Human Resources Department that supported the Chamber’s various business objectives. Arlie is proficient in Mandarin Chinese and has lived in Shanghai, China. Originally from Tampa, Florida, Arlie graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Arts in East Asian Languages and Literatures. This spring, Arlie will be traveling to Texas, France, Germany, Ireland, Georgia, Florida, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, Wisconsin, Michigan, Chicago, Upstate New York, and Western Massachusetts to recruit the 5th cohort of Schwarzman Scholars.

Bing Liang

Having joined the Beijing-based team at Schwarzman College in 2014, Bing is dedicated to recruiting Schwarzman Scholars from the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Macao. Prior to joining the College, she worked for four years with global leaders as the Supervisor of the Development Office at Tsinghua University School of Economics and Management. Bing has more than twelve years’ experience as a Planning and Operations Manager in international sporting events, including three Olympic Games and many other world class events. This spring, Bing is traveling to major cities in the Chinese mainland, Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Macao seeking the next extraordinary class of Schwarzman Scholars.

Christian Tanja

Before joining the Foundation, Christian worked as an Outreach and Recruitment Specialist at the Institute of International Education working with NGO, corporate, and private sector clients to administer their global scholarship programs. Previously, he lived in Shanghai, China serving as a high school college counselor and also as an admissions officer in the Undergraduate Admissions Office at the University of California, Los Angeles. Christian graduated with an MA in International Educational Development and Higher Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and earned his BA from the University of California, Los Angeles. His Master’s thesis focused on dialogue on diversity and inclusion within the Chinese international student context. Outside of work, he enjoys beatboxing for his acapella group and setting for his volleyball team. This season includes outreach visits to the United Kingdom, India, and across the United States (including California, Arizona/Colorado, Illinois/Indiana, Upstate New York, and Vermont/New Hampshire).

Frederico Menino

Frederico Menino joined the Schwarzman Scholars Program in 2017, after serving as Education Advisor at the Brazilian Foreign Ministry in New York for over five years.  Having earned his PhD in Sociology, Frederico is an enthusiast of youth engagement and international education. In the upcoming months, Frederico will be visiting Argentina, Brazil, Eastern Canada, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Uruguay, and the United States. During the summer, Frederico and other team members will also host a series of webinars targeted at applicants and prospective students from African countries.

Jessica Loh

Prior to joining the Foundation, Jessica served as the Director of Outreach at the Institute of International Education in Bangkok, where she oversaw outreach for global scholarships across Asia-Pacific, and the University of Michigan, where she advised engineering students on work, internships, volunteer, and other projects abroad. Additionally, Jessica worked six years at a university in northern Thailand overseeing international campus life and leadership programs, and is an alumna of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Programme. Equipped with an MA in International Education, Jessica is impassioned by the impact of global and engaged education. This spring, Jessica will travel to cities in Asia-Pacific and the Pacific Northwest in search of the next class for Schwarzman Scholars.

Julia Cunico Gardner

Julia Cunico Gardner has more than a decade of experience working with global leaders in Asia, North America, and Europe on economics, foreign policy, and next-generation leadership development. From 2005-2009, Julia worked at the Korea Economic Institute in Washington DC. In 2009, she joined the team of Nobel Laureate Joseph Stiglitz at Columbia Business School. From 2014-2016, she directed the Pacific Forum CSIS Young Leaders Program in Honolulu, HI. Julia received her MS in negotiation and conflict resolution from Columbia University and her BA in Politics and Asian Studies from Fairfield University. Julia’s outreach will focus on the US Northeast and mid-Atlantic with stops in Maine, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Washington, D.C.

Lisa Yu

Lisa’s first professional role was to develop student life programming for Boston University’s Shanghai Study Abroad Program in China. After living in Shanghai for more than three years, she returned to New York where she worked as a legal document translator from Chinese to English. Lisa realized she missed working in a non-profit organization and joined Schwarzman Scholars in 2017, which combined her passions for foundation work, higher education, and China. Lisa is the team’s data analyst and is developing deep expertise in reporting and database management. In addition, she supports the admissions team in their outreach and selection efforts and manages incoming scholars’ flights and visas.  Lisa received her BA in International Relations from Boston University.

Rong Zhu
Rong is currently on the China Admissions Team and generally focuses on outreach, data management, and selection support in the greater China region. Prior to joining Schwarzman College in 2016, Rong worked for more than eight years with Pearson Group. She was on the pioneering team that partnered with China’s major state-owned corporations in key talent benchmarking, staff recruiting, and evaluation as globalization presented personnel challenges to corporations. Rong received her BA from Shanghai International Studies University and enjoys mountain climbing.

Yuyang Zhang
Originally from Fujian, Yuyang attended Primary School and Middle School in Fuzhou City, High School in Singapore, and University in the United States and Japan. Studying abroad for almost a decade and being trilingual in Chinese, English, and Japanese, Yuyang regards herself as both a creature and a creator of international education. During her years abroad, Yuyang worked for a variety of organizations, including university, think tank, non-profit organizations, and international media groups. Currently, she is mainly responsible for outreach and selection in the greater China region. Yuyang graduated summa cum laude from American University in Washington D.C. with a Bachelor’s degree in International Studies with a Minor in Japanese Language and a Master’s Degree in International and Intercultural Communication.


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