Mason Conley is the winner

The Slavic Department is pleased to announce the Vekich Scholar for 2019-20. Mason Conley was selected as this year's winner of the award, which supports study of South Slavic languages by providing textbook materials and making available funding for language study in the summer following the academic year.

Mason is an MA student at the Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center, with research interests in South Slavic linguistics and language contact with non-Slavic languages in the Balkans. He says, " My interest in South Slavic first began when I studied abroad in Salzburg, Austria over a decade ago. I encountered for the first-time people who spoke Albanian, B/C/S, Greek, Macedonian and Bulgarian. I believe the way they all communicated in “Croatian” was what initially interested me. They all spoke different languages, but used Croatian, or at least what they considered “Croatian”, to communicate with one another. Since my experience there, I have been searching for a place to study the languages, history and culture of the Balkans, specifically, Serbian and Albanian."

Congratulations to Mason and best wishes in your studies in the coming year!