Eighteen Stanford students named Fulbright U.S. Student scholars

July 6, 2017, 1:00 a.m.

Eighteen Stanford students were named Fulbright U.S. Student scholars for the 2017 to 2018 year. These students will be travelling to 11 foreign countries to pursue projects in their respective fields with full funding provided through the Fulbright program.

The goal of the Fulbright program is to promote unity between the United States and foreign countries. Through the program, students are able to pursue either research or teaching projects abroad with a fully funded grant. Examples of projects proposed by Stanford Fulbright scholars this year range from conducting research on the origin of the word “thug” to writing a play to evaluating ancient medicines for modern cures.

The program aims to give students as much freedom as possible in designing and executing their projects.

“The Fulbright gives you money and freedom in the country,” said Vivian Ho ’17. “There are few requirements for the scholarship. It really gives you the freedom to do what you want and make the project your own.”

Ho, a recently-graduated human biology major and a Fulbright scholar, will be going to Uganda for nine months starting in mid-August.  She will be working with the Safe Mothers Safe Babies organization, where she has worked before, to improve the health of mothers and children in the area.

“The experience was absolutely amazing,” she said. “I loved the people, and I loved the sense of community that existed in Uganda. After that summer, I knew I had to go back, and I knew this was something that I was passionate [about] and interested in. ”

For Ho, the Fulbright program will allow her fulfill her goal of going back to Uganda, this time for an extended period.

Another Fulbright scholar, Emma Walker-Silverman ’17, will be headed to Turkey to research the relationships between refugees and their surrounding communities in Turkey and around the world.

“I haven’t actually done field research before,” Walker-Silverman said. “I have a lot to learn and I’m hoping I’ll have a good relationship with my mentors in Turkey.”

Walker-Silverman’s mentors for the project will come from Turkey’s Yaşar University, where she will be completing her research.

Though almost 7,000 miles from home, Walker-Silverman still looks forward to playing her favorite sport, ice hockey, for a local team in Turkey.

“Wherever I go I keep finding hockey teams to play for, so if they have one there, that’s always a fun entry into the community,” said Walker-Silverman.

With support from the Fulbright program, the eighteen Stanford Fulbright scholars will take on whatever challenges lie ahead going into next year in the pursuit of research and teaching abroad.


Contact Kesi Soundararajan at kswkks2719 ‘at’ gmail.com.

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