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SXU Alumna Awarded Dunn Fellowship


Saint Xavier University (SXU) alumna Frantcheska Tchatchoua '20 has been awarded the Dunn Fellowship, a year-long governmental honors fellowship program that provides highly motivated college students with firsthand experience of how the state government functions.

 To be considered for the award, Tchatchoua had to apply for the program, submit two letters of recommendation, and go through two rounds of interviews. The fellowship was awarded to individuals committed to academic excellence who demonstrated leadership abilities and community service involvement. Tchatchoua's academic achievements, leadership roles, and internship experience with Senator Tammy Duckworth contributed to her selection.

"I am excited to immerse myself in a new environment where I can make a tangible difference in the community. I am happy to have an opportunity to contribute to public service in Illinois," said Tchatchoua, who will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the governor's office, including providing administrative duties, daily housekeeping, and technical support to staff.

Tchatchoua earned a bachelor's degree in political science from SXU and a master's degree in political communications from American University in Washington, D.C., which Tchatchoua says strengthened her passion for public service and provided her with the tools and knowledge needed for her career.

Tchatchoua chose SXU because of the close-knit community and individualized attention to student success and support.

"SXU offered me countless opportunities for internships, networking, and real-world learning experiences in politics and public service. I was drawn to political science because it provides a deep understanding of how societies make decisions, the dynamics of powers, and how policies shape the world around us. I have always been drawn to these kinds of phenomena and understand the broader implications for our society," said Tchatchoua.

Tchatchoua is grateful for the strong foundation and opportunities SXU provided. She participated in the Washington Internship Institute Program, which gave her confidence and the ability to develop valuable professional skills.

"The knowledge, skills, and experience I gained prepared me for my career. The academic curriculum challenged me to think critically and analyze complex issues, and the opportunities for hands-on learning allowed me to apply classroom concepts to real-world examples and gain practical experience in my field," said Tchatchoua.

While at SXU, Tchatchoua was involved in various clubs and organizations and served as an ambassador for the Washington Internship Institute and a member of Black Student Union (BSU). Some of her favorite memories include attending events such as spring formal, Welcome Week, and Homecoming Week.

In the future, Tchatchoua plans to work toward progressive politics and policies. She wants to help advance women's equity in society by supporting initiatives that promote economic empowerment and a more inclusive and equitable culture.