The Yenching Academy of Peking University Introduces the 2018 Cohort of Yenching Scholars

The Yenching Academy of Peking University is delighted to introduce its fourth cohort! These 114 outstanding young scholars will enroll in the interdisciplinary Master’s in China Studies program this September. The scholars hail from 41 countries and regions, and have attended 106 different universities for their previous studies. The most represented are the University of Oxford, with five students; and Peking University, the University of Cambridge, Yale University, and Beijing Normal University, with three students each.


Hannah Kirk (UK, University of Cambridge) graduated with a degree in Economics from Trinity College at the University of Cambridge. She has researched incorporation of societal norms into a game-theoretic framework, testing the effect of religiosity on strategic interactions. Hannah has worked with the Bank of England and Goldman Sachs. She has a keen interest in programming. Aside from English, the only other language Hannah is fluent in is Python, but she looks forward to adding Mandarin to this list. 

Kazuki Miyazaki (Japan, Waseda University) earned his degree in Social Sciences with a minor in Peace Studies. He has studied abroad in the U.S. and China, and worked as an international election observer for Sri Lanka’s parliamentary election in 2015. He has also assisted in election-related projects in Thailand and Myanmar, and in Tokyo, he interned at the UNDP. Kazuki will focus on Politics and International Relations at the Yenching Academy, with the aspiration to foster more stable and peaceful relations in Asia. 

Wang Xin (China, Fudan University) completed his degree in International Politics, and has exchanged to the University of California, Santa Cruz and the University of Cambridge. He has researched the evaluation criteria of the AIIB and volunteered as a teacher in Gansu Province, China and Galle, Sri Lanka. Wang was a Keynote Presenter for the BRICS Youth Leadership Seminar in Samara, Russia in 2017. His main academic interest is intercultural communications mechanisms for connecting China and the rest of the world. 


Julia Jacobs (U.S., Northwestern University) graduated with degrees in Journalism and Political Science. She has reported on Midwestern U.S. news for Reuters, and has covered national news for The Boston Globe and NBC’s Meet the Press. Julia is currently a reporting fellow for The New York Times. At the Yenching Academy, Julia studies Politics and International Relations to provide a foundation for one day reporting on U.S.-China foreign policy. 

Kennedy Chiduziem Ekezie-Joseph (Nigeria, University of Calabar) earned his degree in Philosophy, focusing on systematizing an axiological system for African Philosophy. He also completed a Diploma in Leading Change specially designed for Queen's Young Leaders Award Winners at the University of Cambridge. Kennedy founded the Calabar Youth Council for Women's Rights, a youth-led non-profit aiming to end gender-based violence, with a focus on female genital mutilation in Nigeria. His work has been recognized by President Obama's YALI Initiative and has won a Resolution Fellowship. Kennedy will pursue a concentration in Economics and Management, researching the impact of China's investment in Africa. 

Fiona Quimbre (France, Sciences Po Bordeaux & Cardiff University) earned a Joint Degree in Political Sciences from Sciences Po Bordeaux and Cardiff University before completing a Master’s in International Relations at Sciences Po Bordeaux. She has researched China’s huaqiao huaren policy and policy toward Africa. She has worked with the Tour de France and the Olympic Games, and interned with the French Foreign Office, the Welsh Government, and in an ambassadorial defense department. At the Yenching Academy, she will pursue Politics and International Relations as her research area, investigating China’s security strategy in Africa. 

Sosan Afghan (Afghanistan, American University of Central Asia) grew up in Kabul, Afghanistan and earned her degree in Journalism and Mass Communications in Kyrgyzstan. She has volunteered with the Cultural Diversity Project and women’s empowerment movements including Every-Woman Everywhere, and has served as a team leader in AIESEC, a youth leadership NGO. Sosan is passionate about documentary making, and filmed a short movie about Afghan immigrants in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. She will focus in Literature & Culture at the Yenching Academy.


The Yenching Academy of Peking University was established in 2014 with the goal of pushing study of China beyond the boundaries of traditionally defined Humanities and Social Sciences disciplines through a specially designed, English-taught Master’s program. Students from its first four cohorts hail from a total of 75 different countries and regions.  To view the introductions to all 114 incoming scholars, please click here