Former Ramsey Grammar School student Hollie Jaques is the winner of the 2016 Ella Olesen Scholarship.
Hollie will follow a long line of local students in spending nine months at the University of Idaho in the USA.
The scholarship is named after a former registrar of the university who died in 1985.
Her Manx ancestry – her mother Margaret Teare was born in Ballaugh and emigrated to America in 1890 – led her to gift the scholarship in 1971. It is awarded annually to a female degree student who has been supported through her studies by the Department of Education and Children (DEC).
Forming the interview panel for this year’s scholarship were Tim Crookall MLC, Minister for Education and Children, and Andrew Shipley, Manager of Legal and Administrative Services.
They interviewed five applicants before selecting Hollie to travel to Idaho next August.
Hollie, 21, is studying politics and geography at the University of Glasgow and graduates next summer.
She plays an active part in many aspects of university life, not least sharing her passion for Manx dancing with fellow students.
A Young Dancer of Mann runner-up and member of the Manx dance group Ny Fennee, founded by her mum, Sue-Ling, Hollie presides over the university’s student dance company and teaches Manx dancing to learners.
She has represented the Island at numerous Celtic festivals, including the Festival Interceltique de Lorient, where, in 2015, she participated in events for dignitaries and was interviewed for French TV.
She helps run Shennaghys Jiu, held in the Island each Easter. She has won two North American Manx Awards for her contribution to culture.
In her spare time, Hollie works as a social media marketer for a Glasgow PR company.
‘I am keen to continue to endorse Manx culture abroad and promote the Island internationally. I am also keen to see more of the world and meet new people. The scholarship, which brings with it the opportunity to fly the Manx flag, is the perfect next step in my life.’
The Minister said:
‘The scholarship is a wonderful opportunity for a graduate to live in a different country and experience its culture while continuing to study. Our scholars have an amazing time in Idaho and do much to raise awareness of the Island at international events and the like. Indeed, two recent scholars have returned to Idaho and are furthering their studies there.
‘I wish Hollie well as our latest “Ella Olesen girl”.’
The current Ella Olesen scholars are Cathy Breed, of Pooil Vaaish, and Bethany Quayle, of Colby, who are studying in Idaho until May 2016.