Five Recent Graduates Earn 2021-2022 Fulbright Scholar Awards


Clare Crosson, Contributing Writer

For the third consecutive year, Colgate University has been named a top producer of 2021-2022 Fulbright U.S. scholars for U.S. colleges and universities, according to the university website. 

“I’m very happy that Colgate, for three years in a row now, is a top Fulbright producing institution for small schools … I would love for students to be aware of that,” Steve Wright, associate dean of fellowship advising at Colgate said.

Five recent graduates – Nora Mulroy ’21, Sophie Karp ’21, Cole Grumbach ’21, Charlotte Saltzgaber ‘20 and Christina Weiler ’21 – received Fulbright Awards for the 2021-2022 academic year. Grumbach, an international relations and Middle Eastern and Islamic studies double major, is currently conducting research on nation-branding and culture industries in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Saltzgaber, a computer science major, and Weiler, an environmental economics major, are both teaching English in Galicia, Spain. This award cycle was also named the most competitive cycle to date with a record number of applicants nationwide. 

Jennifer Lundt, class of 2019, received the Fulbright award for the 2019-2020 cycle. Lundt commented on the life-changing opportunity this award gave her.

“I received a Fulbright Grant for the 2019-2020 cycle to be an English Teaching Assistant (ETA) in Malaysia,” Lundt said. “The Fulbright gave me the unparalleled opportunity to live in this remote community and the ability to form purposeful relationships whilst working with students and fellow teachers […] I also valued the Fulbright experience to bond with my fellow ETAs, with the three other women placed in my town becoming some of my closest friends.”

The Fulbright Program, the world’s largest and most diverse international educational exchange program, awards grants for individually designed study and research projects or for English Teach Assistant Programs each year. Through community engagement, the program facilitates cultural exchange and increases mutual understanding. 

“In some ways, Fulbright is a much more in-depth cultural and immersive experience than studying abroad,” Wright said. “The experiences are often of three types; in any case, they are cultural and linguistic, but they can also include study, research or teaching. I feel like they’re considered higher education professionally. Kind of a level beyond study abroad”. 

Senior John Morgan addressed how these recent successes adjust the perception of Colgate as a whole. 

I think this largely mirrors the goals of the third century plan. Colgate as an institution in the upcoming century is seeking to attract the world’s best and brightest – our production of these types of scholars mirrors that,” Morgan said. 

Morgan, who works as a Senior Admissions Intern, spoke to potential effects on Colgate admissions as well. 

“In terms of what it means in the context of admissions, the jury’s still out on whether we’ll see an increase in applicants as a result of our success. It takes a very specific high schooler to know what a Fulbright Scholarship is, let alone be interested in it,” Morgan said. “Among those select few, I can imagine we’d become a more attractive option for them, but as for the general population this just becomes another feather in our cap in terms of post-graduation preparation.”

Anna Brown, class of 2021, who is currently a fellow in the Colgate Office of National Fellowships and Scholarships, is waiting to hear back about her own Fulbright application for the 2022-2023 cycle. Brown, an anthropology and Spanish double major, hopes to receive a Fulbright Grant for study/research in Mexico. 

“I really want to do research before my dissertation … that’s why I applied and what it boils down to,” Brown said.

Brown also described her motivations for applying to Fulbright specifically and the opportunities it provides compared to her Colgate study abroad. “I think it would be really different because I wouldn’t be studying or taking classes; I’d be doing more of an individual thing … and it was also pre COVID when I studied abroad so that will impact it,” Brown said. 

According to Lundt, Colgate students can learn a lot through opportunities presented through the Fulbright award.

“I think it is fantastic news for Colgate to be named a top producer of scholars, as I know many of my peers who have also received life-changing experiences through this program. The opportunity to live abroad for a whole year and question American-centric values and ideals is something that many Colgate students could benefit from. I hope to see the trend continue,” Lundt said.

The application for the 2023–2024 Fulbright grant cycle will open on March 31, with an application deadline for Colgate students and alumni in early September.