Senior Takes Top National Honor

Senior Stefani Crabtree of Bend, Oregon, loves to “dig in,” literally. Last year, she won an Esterly Award that sent her overseas on an archaeological expedition to France, where she found an artifact that is now the basis of her senior thesis. Beginning this summer, she will “dig in” in India,Viet Nam, Samoa and New Zealand to research women and alternative medicine, courtesy of the prestigious Thomas J.Watson Fellowship. Crabtree was awarded this one-year $22,000 grant to fund travel, living, and research expenses that will enable her to study Ayurvedic treatments, work with female shamans, and examine the effectiveness of traditional medicine hospitals.

Crabtree is one of 48 students from select colleges across the nation to earn the Watson Fellowship.An anthropology major, she applied for the fellowship because she wanted to experience other cultures,”The grant of $20,000 is close to the entry-level salary I would make in the U.S., and I couldn’t think of a better way to earn it than through this research.”

The Watson is not the only opportunity on Crabtree’s horizon—she has many ideas about where she will land after completing her Watson Fellowship. She has already been accepted to the University of Colorado-Boulder’s archaeology master’s and Ph.D. program—where she will probably attend immediately following her return to the states. Eventually, however, she wants to open her own restaurant,”I make dinner for my friends once a week, and they are encouraging me to go to the Cordon Bleu cooking school after completing the fellowship. I have even taken ceramics at Scripps just so I could learn to make all the plates and serving items myself.” Maybe she can put her worldly “finds” on display in the restaurant, too.