For the second year in a row, Hobart and William Smith were recently named among the nation’s top colleges and universities with the most recipients of U.S. Fulbright Student Awards. Known for its highly competitive field of applicants, the Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, operating in more than 140 countries.
Following the newly announced national “Top Fulbright Producer” honor, four more HWS students this spring have been awarded 2017-18 Fulbright Awards, bringing the total of recipients to 18 students over the past three graduating classes. The newest recipients are:
- Sara DeVault-Feldman ’17 (Vietnam). DeVault-Feldman, who previously studied abroad in Vietnam during her junior year, will return to begin an English Teaching Assistant. The cultural anthropology major and public policy minor says: “I believe that teaching English is a way for my interest in Vietnam to be channeled into something useful and beneficial for other people.”
- Juliana Heffern ’17 (Malaysia). Heffern, a psychology major, international relations minor, will teach English in Malaysia beginning in January. She will draw from her previous teaching experiences volunteering in a third-grade class in Guatemala and as an America Reads tutor in Geneva. She will also use skills gained from her experience as an athletics instructor at Wediko Children’s Services, a summer program for youth with behavioral and emotional challenges.
- Jordan Loretz ’17 (Taiwan). Loretz, a double major in Asian studies and music, will travel to Taiwan this fall to begin his tenure as an English Teaching Assistant. He plans to use music to advance language comprehension, saying: “I hope to learn more about how music functions in Taiwanese culture, and the ways in which it’s incorporated into daily life and education.”
- Danielle Mueller ’16, MAT ’17 (Czech Republic). Mueller, who is in the Colleges’ Master of Arts in Teaching program, will teach English while immersing herself in Czech culture. The HWS graduate with a B.A. in sociology and English education says: “Understanding the Czech language is an integral aspect of establishing a meaningful relationship with the culture. I can only hope that I can inspire my students the way professors have inspired me.”
“For years, Hobart and William Smith students have been consistently recognized by the Fulbright program for their qualities as global citizens and their potential to enrich communities around the world,” says HWS President Mark D. Gearan. “This latest announcement yet again highlights the intellect and character of our students, the vital work of our faculty and staff, and the depth and strength of an HWS education.”
The past two years at HWS marked record years for Fulbright recipients with seven each year. For last year’s 2016-17 group, more than a quarter of HWS applicants received Fulbright awards.
“Ultimately, HWS being named a Fulbright Top Producer is a result of how our students take advantage of all that HWS offers them, and how doing so prepares our students to take on challenges across the world,” says Scott MacPhail, associate director of Health Professions counseling and fellowship advising. Earlier this semester, MacPhail was in Washington, D.C., to attend a reception hosted by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, recognizing and celebrating the 2016-17 Fulbright Top Producing Institutions.