Madeline Sawyer studied in Russia for six weeks over the summer, having been awarded a full merit-based scholarship from the U.S. Department of State. Sawyer, 17, is a senior at Rice Memorial High School and Shelburne resident. She was part of a group of 14 high school students from across the U.S. who served as ambassadors, studied Russian language, trained at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy and were immersed in the everyday life of modern-day Moscow. Prior to their departure, the students spent three weeks in intensive ballet training in New York City. The NSLI-Y program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs in collaboration with American Councils for International Education, the Russian American Foundation and the internationally renowned Bolshoi Ballet Academy in Moscow. The program’s goals are to develop advanced linguistic skills and related cultural understanding, and enable its participants to advance a positive international dialogue and compete effectively in the global world.
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