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Fordham Celebrates Year of Double-Digit Fulbright Winners


The 2012-13 academic year proved to be a stellar one for Fordham students and the Campion Institute and Office of Prestigious Scholarships, pulling in 12 Fulbright awards and achieving the highest success rate since 2010.

As of June 26, seven students won English Teaching Assistantships (ETA), three students won research and study grants, and two students won the relatively new Public Policy Fellowship. The 12 winners came from a pool of 43 applicants, for a yield rate of 26 percent.

Nationally, 1,820 winners were selected from approximately 9,428 applicants.

“We had students who were very well prepared, who put a lot of time and effort into crafting their applications,” Rebecca Stark-Gendrano, Fulbright Fellowship coordinator, said about this year’s winners. “And we’re pulling students from a broad range of schools across the University, especially making a push to encourage graduate students to apply. I think that’s helped to improve the diversity of our applicants.”

Fordham’s 2010 achievement of 13 Fulbright winners placed the University at No. 18 on the Chronicle of Higher Education’s annual list of top Fulbright-producing institutions in the category of doctoral/research institutions—up from No. 28 the previous year.

Although Fordham’s rank dropped last year, this year’s return to double-digits promises a leap back toward the top of the list.

And that’s not an easy feat, Stark-Gendrano said.

“The Fulbright competition isn’t really one competition—it’s more like 150 competitions, with the final decision being made by each country,” she said.

The work begins for students more than a year prior to when winners are announced. Applicants begin the process early in the spring semester and then hit full speed during the summer, when they begin drafting application essays. In the fall, each applicant undergoes on-campus interviews with a campus review committee. Those who are applying to non-English-speaking countries must also complete an interview in their country’s language to prove a certain level of proficiency.

Following the campus review, candidates then advance to the national screening committee and are notified during the winter whether they will be moving on to the final round. The host countries make the final decision by late spring or early summer.

“There are a lot of factors that go into these decisions,” Stark-Gendrano said. “The selection of a candidate can depend on their academic preparation, how many other candidates are pursuing fellowships in that country, or the diversity of the applicant pool.”

Even so, she said, a high caliber of applicants and a mission consonant with the Fulbright program help make Fordham candidates successful.

“There’s a nice overlap between the Fulbright mission to increase mutual understanding among nations and Fordham’s Jesuit emphasis on social justice and creating men and women for others,” she said.

Fordham’s winners are:

  • Asmaa Awad-Farid, GSE ’13, ETA to Israel;
  • Lucy Barnhouse, GSAS ’16, to Germany for her project, “Hospitals as Religious Institutions and the Medieval Treatment of Leprosy: Mainz, 1244-1”;
  • Matthew Briel, GSAS ’15, to Austria for his project, “Bridging East and West: Gennadios Scholarios on Providence and Human Freedom”;
  • Jayson Browder, PCS ’13, ETA to Turkey;
  • Anne Buckel, FCRH ’13, ETA to Vietnam;
  • Sean Cox, GSAS ’13, a Public Policy Fellowship in Guatemala’s Ministry of Agriculture;
  • Sara Lynch, FRCH ’11, ETA to Colombia;
  • Kelly O’Brien, FCRH ’13, to Canada for her project, “Contents Under Pressure: The Ethics of Graffiti and Advertising”;
  • Andrew Palomo, GSS ’16, a Public Policy Fellowship in Guatemala’s Ministry of Education;
  • AnnaMaria Shaker, FCRH ’13, ETA to Morocco;
  • Anjanae Wilson, GSS ’13, ETA to Brazil; and
  • Nusrat Jahan, FCLC ’13, ETA to Bangladesh.

In addition, Kathleen Glatthaar, FCRH ’12, GSE ’13 received an ETA to Austria under the auspices of the Fulbright program and the Austrian-American Educational Commission.

One student was also named as Fulbright alternate: Evangelos Razis, FCLC ’13, to Singapore for his research project, “Politics of Financial Speculation: A Case Study of Singapore’s Housing Markets.”


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