DELAWARE, Ohio – Ohio Wesleyan University today announced the receipt of a significant gift to create an endowed fund to support students planning to pursue post-graduate fellowships after earning their OWU diplomas.
The gift comes from Washington, D.C., lawyer Jan W. Baran, a 1970 OWU graduate, and his wife, Kathryn K. Baran. Income from the new endowment will be used to award grants to honors students identified as having a high probability of success in their efforts to earn post-graduate fellowships.
“Historically, more than 50 percent of Ohio Wesleyan graduates pursue advanced degrees – including master’s degrees, doctoral degrees, and law degrees – within five years of their OWU commencement,” said President Rock Jones, Ph.D. “The Jan W. Baran ’70 and Kathryn K. Baran Endowed Fund for Encouragement of Post-Graduate Fellowships is intended to help students with their higher-education aspirations. We are grateful to Jan and Kathryn for their vision in endowing this fund.”
To apply for Baran funding, eligible Ohio Wesleyan students will propose a travel-learning opportunity or individual experience that connects theory to practice. Such opportunities must enhance their OWU experience and strengthen their candidacy for postgraduate fellowships.
Grant recipients will be recognized as Baran Fellows, Jones said. By accepting endowment support, Baran Fellows make a good faith commitment to complete an application for a post-graduate fellowship. Because Ohio Wesleyan students majoring in the natural sciences already have similar opportunities provided by the university’s Summer Science Research Program, only students outside of the natural sciences will be eligible to become Baran Fellows.
“Ohio Wesleyan provided the foundation that launched me into law school and qualified me for a generous scholarship,” Jan Baran said. “With this gift, Kathryn and I hope to promote similar opportunities for current and future OWU students.”
At Ohio Wesleyan, Jan Baran majored in English, played varsity men’s lacrosse, and was elected president of the student body. He later earned his law degree from Nashville-based Vanderbilt University as a Patrick Wilson Scholar in Law. He is a senior partner at Wiley Rein LLP, where he heads the Election Law and Government Ethics group. Kathryn Baran, also an attorney, works in the Washington office of New York-based Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. The Barans have four adult children and reside in Virginia.
Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities. Ohio Wesleyan offers more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. OWU combines an internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that connect classroom theory with real-world practice. Located in Delaware, Ohio, OWU’s 1,850 students represent 41 states and 45 countries. The university is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the 2013 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction, and included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.