Duke Among Top Schools for Fulbright Student Awards

February 15, 2019

Thirteen Duke University students and recent alumni received Fulbright awards to study and teach during the 2018-2019 academic year.


-By Duke Global staff

Each year, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs announces the top producing institutions for the Fulbright Program, the U.S. government's flagship international educational exchange program.

Duke has been named a top producer of U.S. Fulbright student awardees every year since the Institute of International Education began tracking the rankings. This brings Duke’s total count of Fulbright student awardees to 480.

“We’re so excited for our 13 winners. The accomplishments of our undergraduates, alumni and graduate students are such a gift to witness,” says Bevin Tighe, program coordinator for Nationally Competitive Scholarships at Duke. “It’s so rewarding to help them craft their written applications to showcase their accomplishments as well as their professional and personal visions for a more interconnected world.”

Here is the list of Duke students who received 2018-2019 Fulbright Student awards, his or her major/program, host country and project:

  • Michael Becker, PhD in history ‘20, Jamaica: Enslaved Jamaicans, Abolition, & the Struggle over Customary Arrangements, 1780-1838
  • Nicole Gaglia, PhD in art history ‘20, Japan: Visualizing Bodies: Public Health and the Medicalized Everyday in Modern Japan
  • Rajiv Golla, political science ‘17, Uganda: Studying the Indian Community of Uganda and Their Return
  • Medha Gudavalli, public policy ‘16, Ecuador: English instruction
  • Tanner Johnson, computer science ‘17, Spain: English instruction
  • Joshua Lovett, psychology ‘18, South Korea: English instruction
  • Vanessa Lusa, public policy ‘18, Spain: English instruction
  • Danielle Mayall, environmental science and policy ‘15, Brazil: English instruction
  • Attyat Mayans, Chinese, cultural anthropology and child policy ‘18, China: China’s Academic and Social Divide: Preparing to Study Domestically or Abroad for College 
  • Chloe McIntosh, public policy and Spanish ‘17, Brazil: English instruction
  • Tierney Pretzer, public policy ‘18, South Korea: English instruction
  • Maura Smyles, public policy ‘18, Spain: Paternity Leave in Spain: Usage and Impact on Gender Roles
  • Brittany Wong, neuroscience and French ‘18, Switzerland: Gene Therapy for Age-Related Macular Degeneration at the University of Geneva in Switzerland

Over 1,900 U.S. students, artists and young professionals in more than 100 different fields of study are offered Fulbright Program grants to study, teach English and conduct research abroad each year. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program operates in over 140 countries throughout the world.

Since the Fulbright Program began in 1946, participants have been chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential and given the opportunity to exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns. 

“We thank the colleges and universities across the United States that we are recognizing as Fulbright top producing institutions for their role in increasing mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries,” said Marie Royce, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs. “We are proud of all the Fulbright students and scholars from these institutions who represent America abroad, increasing and sharing their skills and knowledge on a global stage.”

The Fulbright Program also awards grants to U.S. scholars, teachers and faculty to conduct research and teach overseas. In addition, some 4,000 foreign Fulbright students and scholars come to the United States annually to study, lecture, conduct research and teach foreign languages.

 “Our aim is to have even more applicants for the coming cycle,” Tighe says. “We look forward to meeting the next amazing group of Duke applicants for these life-changing Fulbright awards.”

For Duke students and alumni thinking about applying in a future cycle, Duke has early deadlines to take advantage of the full range of advising support from Nationally Competitive Scholarships—beginning with application drafts due over the summer. The national deadline for Fulbright Student Program is in early October.

For more information about the Fulbright Student Program, visit https://us.fulbrightonline.org. More details about the Fulbright Scholar Program can be found at https://www.cies.org/.