Stanford University: Four Stanford students named Schwarzman Scholars

The Schwarzman Scholars program, which provides scholarships for a one-year master’s degree in global affairs and participation in a leadership program at Tsinghua University in Beijing, has awarded scholarships to four Stanford students.

The Stanford students include seniors Maya Guzdar, Christina Knight and Alejandra Orozco, and a graduate student who requested to remain anonymous.

A total of 151 Schwarzman Scholars – selected from 33 universities around the world – will join the program in August 2022. At Tsinghua, the scholars choose from elective courses, which they can tailor to satisfy individual career goals while gaining a deeper understanding of the three pillars of the curriculum: China, leadership and global affairs.

Scholars chosen for the program have demonstrated exemplary leadership qualities and the potential to understand and bridge cultural and political differences. As Schwarzman Scholars, they will spend a year of intensive study and cultural immersion – attending lectures, workshops and discussion groups; being mentored and advised by leaders across sectors; and traveling in China.

Stanford’s 2023 Schwarzman Scholars

Maya Guzdar

Maya Guzdar is a senior majoring in international relations with a focus in East Asia and international security in the School of Humanities and Sciences. She is co-president of her senior class.

As a Schwarzman Scholar, Guzdar plans to explore the role American domestic politics plays in shaping U.S. security policy toward China. She also hopes to improve her Mandarin, forge friendships with fellow scholars, travel throughout Asia and learn more about domestic Chinese politics.

Guzdar, who lived with an ethnic minority family in rural China during a high school immersion program, returned to China with a Stanford Global Studies Internship the summer after her freshman year at Stanford.

“Just one summer in China taught me far more about Chinese language, culture and relations with the United States than I could ever learn in an American classroom,” she said. “I cannot fathom how much I’ll learn from a full year in Beijing.”

Christina Knight

Christina Knight is a senior majoring in symbolic systems with an emphasis on artificial intelligence, and minoring in East Asian Studies, with an emphasis on China, in the School of Humanities and Sciences. She is also earning a master’s degree in philosophy.

“I am so grateful for the opportunity to spend a year in China and learn about its culture, language and history,” she said. “I hope to leave the program with a new global perspective on international relations and technology governance. In addition, I hope to meet many interesting people, improve my Mandarin and explore China.”

Knight is writing an honors thesis examining digital tracking technology and civil liberty perceptions in the United States, the United Kingdom and China.

Alejandra Orozco

Alejandra Orozco is a senior majoring in management science and engineering in the operations, technology and policy track in the School of Engineering.

“Through the Schwarzman Scholarship, I hope to connect with the future leaders of technology, finance and policy so that we can guide and help each other have the positive impacts we want to have in the world,” she said.

Orozco, who has studied the work of the Grameen Bank, which provide loans to the poorest people in Bangladesh without requiring collateral, said her long-term goal is to help restructure the financial systems of developing countries such as Mexico – where she grew up – so that they better serve underrepresented populations.

She is the director of the Stanford Capital Group, a student-run financial services organization, and is involved with Stanford’s Society of Latinx Engineers, which encourages and aids undergraduate Latinx students to pursue engineering and science degrees.