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Jun. 9,  2011

Record Number of Emory Students Receive Fulbrights for 2011-12

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A record number of Emory University students have been awarded 2011-12 Fulbright Scholarships to advance their studies, perform research and teach English abroad while serving as ambassadors to their host countries.

The undergraduate and graduate scholars, who represent diverse disciplines across the humanities and sciences, will head to countries around the world, from China and Morocco, to Switzerland and Brazil, among others.

Eight students from the Emory College of Arts and Sciences who graduated this past year received teaching and research grants, nearly double the average number from recent years. Four students in the Laney Graduate School and one from the Rollins School of Public Health also have received Fulbright research grants.

The Fulbright Program is the largest U.S. international exchange program offering opportunities for students, scholars and professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching and teaching in elementary and secondary schools worldwide.

Emory College students receiving 2011-12 Fulbrights include:

• Taylor Brooks, political science and anthropology. Brooks will head to Vietnam, where he previously studied abroad and did research. He will serve as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant (ETA).

• Allison Cohen, Asian studies and linguistics. Cohen received a research grant for study in China to examine successive Chinese translations of an ancient Sanskrit Buddhist text, looking particularly at how the concept of emptiness was translated into Chinese, which had no characters that express the concept.

• John Gibson, history and French. Gibson will conduct archival research in Switzerland in both Neuchatel and Bern, examining the diplomatic role of Switzerland during the French Revolution. He conducted previous research in these archives as a student, sponsored by grants from Emory.

• Kevin Hatcher, French and linguistics. Hatcher received an ETA to work in Morocco. He also will conduct informal research on code-switching in Morocco’s dual languages (French and Arabic). Following high school graduation and before enrolling at Emory, Hatcher spent one year in Detroit as an AmeriCorps volunteer and one year in Paris, taking coursework and serving as an ETA.

Karina Legradi, international studies and Chinese. Legradi received an ETA to work in Taiwan. During a study abroad semester in China, she taught English as a volunteer and also served as a mentor to children at the same orphanage where she had volunteered during a high school course of study in China.

• An Nguyen, environmental studies and chemistry. Nguyen received a research grant to study mosquito populations and ecology in Vietnam to determine where they are most numerous and in what environment they most flourish. She has conducted similar research with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nguyen is a native of Vietnam and immigrated to the United States as a child.

• Shreyas Sreenath, economics. Sreenath received a research grant for Bangladesh to study the significance of women’s ownership of cows, particularly the effects on nutrition for women and children. He has worked on similar projects in Kenya and Uganda.  

Jacqueline Troutman, political science and German Studies. Troutman received an ETA to work in Germany. She is fluent in both French and German and previously studied abroad in France and Austria. At Emory, she was a supplemental instructor in German. 

In addition, Lauren Donnenfeld, political science and French, received an ETA through the French Government English Teaching Assistant program to work in France. She was a nationally ranked debater at Emory. This is not a Fulbright award, but as a finalist for the Fulbright ETA in France, Donnenfeld was automatically considered for the competitive French government-sponsored award.

Two Emory Fulbright finalists for the ETA to Egypt are awaiting notification about their status. Emory sent forward a record 28 undergraduate applicants. Of those, 12 were selected as finalists, one of whom withdrew after receiving the highly competitive Marshall Scholarship.  This year, in the national competition, there were 9,397 applicants for about 1,600 grants.  

Emory Grad Students Receive Research Support

A total of five Emory graduate students were awarded 2011-12 Fulbright grants to conduct research in Brazil, India, South Africa and Germany. They include:

Glen Goodman, Ph.D. student in history. Goodman will head to Brazil where he plans to research the case of Germans and their descendants in 20th-century Brazil to learn more how hyphenated ethnic identities are (re)created over time in shifting national and regional contexts.

Lena Suk, Ph.D. student in history. Suk will do research in Brazil on the evolution of women’s status in the country, specifically using movie theaters as a lens to study women's presence in public leisure culture during a time of intense modernization and urbanization in São Paulo, Brazil, from 1920-1960. Her sources will include films, periodicals, intellectual production, literature, government propaganda and oral history.

Catherine Prueitt, Ph.D. student in religion. Prueitt will do research in India to study the sources of conflict between two major branches of Buddhism and Hinduism, specifically Yogacara Buddhism and Kashmiri Shaivism, with leading scholars of both traditions. 

Eric Harshfield, master’s of public health. Harshfield will work in South Africa on a project to empower community members to improve their health and well-being in the Limpopo Province. The project will use participatory tools to help the community improve access to water and sanitation facilities and increase knowledge of safe hygiene

Matthew Lynch, Ph.D. student in religion. Lynch will do research in Germany to analyze the role of early Jewish (i.e., Persian Era) religious institutions in the diffusion and spread of monotheism, and seek to explain why Israelite monotheism endured while several monotheistic movements that appeared in the ancient world did not. 

The Fulbright program, which is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, offers opportunities for career-launching study, teaching and research abroad and is designed to promote education and cultural exchange between the United States and other nations.

Post-graduate scholars pursuing study or research design their own programs and arrange institutional affiliations in the host countries. The grants cover expenses such as travel and health insurance, and also provide a monthly stipend. Established by Congress in 1946, Fulbright is the largest federally sponsored international educational exchange program.



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