Villanova University Named Top Producer of U.S. Fulbright Students

14 Villanova students won Fulbright awards for 2014-15; University is the nation’s top producer of Fulbright students in the Master’s Institutions category for second year in a row

Fulbright Top Producer

VILLANOVA, Pa. – Villanova University is the nation’s top producer of Fulbright students in the Master’s Institutions category for the second year in a row, according to an announcement made by The Fulbright Program, the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program. Fourteen Villanovans were awarded Fulbright awards for 2014-2015, maintaining the University’s record of having at least one student selected for the coveted scholarships each year since 1994. Villanova has also placed on the list of Top Producers of U.S. Fulbright Students among Masters Institutions every year since 2004 – a list highlighted annually by The Chronicle of Higher Education and this year in the February 12 edition.

“The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is an exceptional opportunity to foster mutual understanding between the U.S. and other countries through educational exchange,” said Jane Morris, Director of the University’s Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships. “The Villanova students who have pursued research or taught English through the Fulbright program serve as wonderful ambassadors of both the United States and Villanova. I am thrilled for them to have this experience and for Villanova to be represented so well in the world.”

All 14 of the University’s 2014-15 Fulbright recipients hail from Villanova’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences (CLAS). Rachel Aumiller M.A. ’12, PhD ’15, Mark Bookman ’14 CLAS, Samuel Ellison ’14 CLAS and Carl Ober ’13 CLAS were awarded 2014-2015 Fulbright Full Grants to pursue independent post-baccalaureate-level research in Slovenia, Japan, the United Kingdom and Denmark, respectively. The remaining 10 Villanova Fulbright Scholars were awarded Fulbright Teaching Assistantships (ETA) to teach English to non-native English speakers, and are as follows: Colin Cascia ’13 CLAS in Germany; Jessica Eby ’14 CLAS in Laos; Meredith LaSalle-Tarantin M.A. ’14 CLAS in Morocco; Michelle McNamara ’12 CLAS in Thailand; Samantha Thoma ’14 CLAS in Turkey; Denis Whelan ’14 CLAS in Spain; Israel Hernandez ’13 CLAS in Malaysia; Andres Ortiz-Gomez ’12 CLAS in Brazil; Thomas Morris ’14 CLAS in Czech Republic; Bethany Wood ’14 CLAS in South Korea.

The Fulbright competition is administered at Villanova through the Center for Undergraduate Research and Fellowships.

Since its inception in 1946, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 360,000 participants—chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential — with the opportunity to exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns. Over 1,800 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 annually. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program operates in over 140 countries throughout the world.  Lists of Fulbright recipients are available at: www.fulbrightonline.org/us.

The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the United States Congress to the Department of State. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States also provide direct and indirect support.

In the United States, the Institute of International Education administers and coordinates the activities relevant to the Fulbright U.S. Student Program on behalf of the Department of State, including conducting an annual competition for the scholarships. The Fulbright Program also awards grants to U.S. scholars, teachers and faculty to conduct research and teach overseas.  In addition, some 4,000 new foreign Fulbright students and scholars come to the United States annually to study for graduate degrees, conduct research and teach foreign languages.

For more information about the Fulbright Program, visit http://eca.state.gov/fulbright.

About Villanova University: Since 1842, Villanova University’s Augustinian Catholic intellectual tradition has been the cornerstone of an academic community in which students learn to think critically, act compassionately and succeed while serving others. There are more than 10,000 undergraduate, graduate and law students in the University's six colleges – the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, the Villanova School of Business, the College of Engineering, the College of Nursing, the College of Professional Studies and the Villanova University School of Law. As students grow intellectually, Villanova prepares them to become ethical leaders who create positive change everywhere life takes them.