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Fulbrights without Borders

News Story

Russia. Spain. Colombia. Where will you go? Applications for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program are available May 1.

Can you picture yourself teaching English in Spain? How about traveling to the Arctic Circle, Cambodia, Tanzania, or anywhere in between for research? If the idea of cultural and educational exchange is something you dream about, then the Office for Student Success is here to help make your dreams a reality through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. Applications for the 2015–2016 program will be available May 1.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program sends scholars to a country of their choosing—about 140 countries in all—to study and conduct research or to teach English for 8-12 months. Established in 1946 to “promote international good will through the exchange of students in the fields of education, culture, and science,” the Fulbright U.S. Student Program is considered the most prestigious international U.S. fellowship exchange program—and this once in a lifetime opportunity is within reach for Pace students.

But don’t take our word for it—just talk to those Pace students who have received the award, like Hannah Tall ’12. She traveled to Colombia for the English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Program and says “Fulbright needed to happen” for her. She was inspired to apply after studying in Peru through the Gilman Scholarship. During that time, she spent a week in Colombia and wanted to return to the country to serve as a cultural ambassador. “When I was there, there was this pride that pours out of their smiles, like ‘We are Colombian and we are proud,’” she says.

Or talk to Faculty Coordinator of Scholarly Initiatives and Distinguished Professor of Art History Janetta Rebold Benton, PhD, who traveled to St. Petersburg, Russia, as a Fulbright Senior Scholar. Her Fulbright allowed her to understand a foreign university system as well as teach students who she says “are interested in all things American,” while serving as a visiting professor in the Graduate School of Art History at European University. “Whether you undertake study and research or are an English Teaching Assistant abroad, you will come to know life in your host country, and your own abilities, in ways previously unimaginable,” says Benton.

Benton, along with a handful of others throughout the University, also assisted La Reina Lawrence ’13 through her Fulbright application process, who has recently been awarded a Fulbright grant to be an ETA in Spain for nine months. Lawrence, like many others, believed Fulbright opportunities were beyond her. However, her opinion began to shift as she worked through her application. “The more Fulbrighters (several of our professors have this distinction) that I met and spoke with, the more I realized that Fulbright appreciates differences and likes its members to have unique life experiences and quirks,” she says.

While applications for the Fulbright are available on May 1 and due by September 12, the Office for Student Success encourages students to begin their applications early, as it is a notoriously rigorous and lengthy process with various deadlines scattered throughout. But fear not, the Office for Student Success is here to guide you through every step of the way, and even connects applicants with Fulbright alumni to help craft the best applications possible. “The folks that helped me with my application were like family,” says Tall, “I wanted to make sure they knew me as a person so they could help me with my application.”

So are you ready to pack your bags and go? Please review additional information about the Fulbright U.S. Student Program here and contact Assistant Program Coordinator Dolores Alfieri at dalfieri@pace.edu to discuss where to begin. If the Fulbright doesn’t sound just right for you, the Office for Student Success can help students earn many other prestigious scholarships and awards. Click here for a list of additional awards.

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