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2024-25 Sanders Scholars

The History Department congratulates the 2024-25 inaugural cohort of Sanders Scholars!

We are so grateful to Ian Sanders ('91) for endowing the Sanders Scholars Program. Professor Robin Bates will lead the program for the second time this fall. We are thrilled to welcome 15 undergraduate students who will gather around the table in the Leopold Room, Harris Hall 108 (for both fall and winter quarters) to engage with big questions, meet major figures in the field, and collaborate with fellow students.   


Kylie Callender

Hello! My name is Kylie Callender, and I am majoring in both History and Slavic Studies. I'm a rising third year, and I hope to explore the impact of history on humanity today, and how we can use it to guide our future.





Julián Fefer

Julián is a junior studying history, political science, and economics. He believes community-driven policy is the key to redressing systemic inequities that marginalize communities of color and thinks that historical knowledge and ways of thinking are critical for policy work. He is excited about the collaborative and discussion-based nature of the program and cannot wait to get to know the other students in the program. On campus, Julián is also a research fellow for the Institute for Policy Research and a member of Students Organizing for Labor Rights, a coalition of students that support worker-led initiatives to create discrimination-free, just campus work environments. Julián loves Argentine rock and Latin American Canción Protesta, and in his free time, he plays cello with Northwestern’s Philharmonia and plays intramural soccer.


Ben Isakoff

I'm Benjamin Isakoff from Brookline, Massachusetts. I will be graduating in 2025 with a major in Economics and a minor in Chinese. I signed up for the Sander's Scholars program because I've really enjoyed my coursework in developmental economics and want to study the development of countries from a historical lens. The Sanders Scholars will allow me to continue my academic journey and learn about how historians consider the problems of historical development. I'm excited to learn more about history and write a research paper.


Matthew Jamil 

My name is Matthew Jamil, and I am currently a first year studying history and social policy, with hopes of pursuing a career in the legal field or in activism in the future. At NU, I am involved in a couple of clubs and activities including Kesem and the Evans Scholar chapter. Outside of school, I enjoy long walks, exploring the city, and watching Netflix docuseries.



Corey Koh  

Hi everyone! I'm Corey, a second year Music and History double degree from Singapore. History has always been my favourite subject, and it has grown to become the thing I'm most passionate about. My favourite aspect of history is Military History. I'm looking forward to learning from everyone and engaging in the big, historiographical questions. Outside of history, I sing and produce my own music.



Conrad Martin  

My name is Conrad Martin, I am a Political Science and Asian Language-Culture Major from the class of 2026. I am really interested in all types of history, and I find myself using information from history classes all the time in my major coursework. I am particularly interested in examining how historical events underpin present geopolitical circumstances and how interpretations of these vary between scholars. I am thrilled to participate in this program and broaden my view of historical research.



 Jamie Neiberg

Jamie Neiberg is a journalism and history double major from downtown Manhattan, and a member of the Class of 2027. She is excited to engage with her peers on the tangible and intangible aspects of history through the Sanders Scholars program. She has spent her freshman year exploring different historical themes with a focus on the social dimensions of American history, and a passion for understanding how different movements and policies can make sense of each other. She looks forward to exploring the meaning of history alongside other enthusiastic and passionate students. Outside the classroom, she is a member of the crossword puzzle team, the club golf team and podcasting club. She is also a chatty conversationalist, Modern Love column fanatic and Joni Mitchell fan.


 Lily Ogburn 

My name is Lily Ogburn, and I am a rising third year from Cincinnati, Ohio majoring in journalism and history with a minor in legal studies. Within the history major, my concentration is Asia and the Middle East. Outside of school, I am a reporter for The Daily Northwestern, the Co-Chair of the Academics Committee for Northwestern’s Associated Student Government, and a goalie on the women’s club lacrosse team. I am excited to learn more about Asia in a global context through discussions with my classmates and Professor Bates in the Sanders Scholars Program.

perkins-resized.jpgMia Perkins

Kia ora! My name is Mia Perkins, and I am a member of the Class of 2026, currently pursuing degrees in International Studies and Economics. I am from Whanganui, New Zealand, and I am fascinated to explore the role of historically marginalized and Indigenous communities in historical narratives. As I look to work in public policy, I’m excited to glean the necessary historical insight into voices that reflect the variety that life and which are needed to enact meaningful change. I hope to learn not just more about the discipline of history, but its life force as an evolving discipline through meaningful and exciting conversations with my peers and academics. Outside of academics, I am an avid hiker and artist, and excited to create, inspire, and make people laugh along the way.

ryan-resized.jpgPeter Ryan

I am a junior at Northwestern studying history and economics. My specific historical interests are the histories of commercial entertainment, popular interaction with financial systems, and social geography. I am excited to engage with the history department's phenomenal faculty and students and to learn more about their fields of expertise. Outside of history, I am an avid Philadelphia Phillies fan and an editor for the satirical publication The Gutter.



Eero Somers

My name is Eero Somers. I am a third-year majoring in History and Legal Studies. I'm really hoping to improve my ability to analyze and construct arguments through a historical lens. I also think that being able to engage directly with authors and historians is a once in a lifetime opportunity.




Isaiah Tatum

Hey guys! My name is Isaiah Tatum (Class of 2027), and I am from The Woodlands, Texas, outside Houston. I plan to study journalism and data science. I am extremely excited to be a Sanders Scholar. A little bit about me: I enjoy running, catching up on TV shows and trying new restaurants. Through this program, I hope to explore historic parallels to present events, including those which are overlooked or even ignored.


vazgryna-resized.jpgAlisa Vazgryna

Hi! I'm Alisa Vazgryna, a first year in Weinberg studying History and minoring in Classical Studies from Brooklyn, New York. I'm interested in learning about and understanding the world and am having an incredible time exploring my passions here at Northwestern. Outside of academics, I love reading and adore my two cats. I'm super excited to dive deeper into the study of history and meet brilliant individuals during my time as a Sanders Scholar!



Natalie Wells

My name is Natalie Wells, and I am a Global History major in the graduating class of 2026. In the Sanders Scholars program, I hope to explore the role of sports in an international setting, specifically the global outreach of basketball. I am excited to engage in academic discussions with my peers and embark on an original research project with some of the foremost historical experts. Outside of class, I am a staff writer for Inside NU, where I cover basketball, football, and field hockey on campus.


won-resized.jpgChristina Won

Born in Seoul, South Korea but raised in Dubai (UAE), Sri Lanka, and the United States, I’m a palette of diverse colors. For high school, I attended a British International School where my passion for history first commenced. But as much as I dealt with transtemporal themes from my early years, I felt that my background led my thinking to gear towards a European, Western perspective. Hence, the education I’m receiving from Northwestern’s history department is particularly eye-opening for me. Freshman winter quarter, learning WWII with Professor Hein’s specialized focus on Asia, I was able to unravel new pages of military and diplomatic history. This is exactly why I hope to enroll in the program: I want to continue challenging my perspectives while in active conversation with others — being both stimulated and supported by fellow Sanders Scholars and faculty.