The Fulbright-Hayes Scholarship and the Fulbright U.S. Student Program are two of the most prestigious and well-known scholarships in the United States. Most recently, out of the ten applicants who applied for the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA), eight received the award. The Fulbright U.S. Student Program selected the remaining two.
"Most applicants who apply for the Fulbright-Hays also apply for the Fulbright as well," Melissa O'Neill, the Fellowship and Awards Coordinator with The University Graduate School, said. "They are both similar programs that allow students to study abroad and provide financial aid. Most applicants find out if they've received the U.S. Student Program before they find out the Fulbright-Hays, and you can't accept the U.S. Student Program and receive the Fulbright-Hays and vice versa."
According to O'Neill, there was a significant increase in awards for the Fulbright programs this year. She attributes the growth to the students' collective effort to perfect their applications and the multiple resources they had available, such as the Grad Grants Center.
"We offer brown bag sessions, canvas bootcamps, and feedback to make sure everyone's applications are the best they can be."
Sydney-Paige Patterson, a fourth-year doctoral student studying 20th-century Black international history, was selected as a recipient for the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. She hopes to travel to India to study the Dalit Panther Party—a party like the Black Panther Party—and immerse herself in the Marathi language.
"It's such a wonderful opportunity for me," Patterson said. "I wanted to focus on how women made an impact in masculine or masculine focused groups like the Dalit Panthers. I plan to use women's memoirs and artistic creations to examine how they entered, impacted, and sometimes transformed these patriarchal and radical spaces."
According to Patterson, when she was looking for an international grant to help her do her research, the U.S. Student Program fit her needs. Patterson feels she would not have made her application as good as it was without multiple individuals' help.
"I recommend getting as much feedback as possible," Patterson said. "My advisors, the Grad Grant Center, Melissa O'Neill, all helped me so much with my application."
Liam James Kingsley, a fourth-year Ph.D. candidate in African history, was one of the eight recipients of the Fulbright Hays DDRA, which he will use to travel to Namibia to research how HIV/AIDs has shaped the country and South Africa.
Kingsley notes that as a Ph.D. student, he and others like him often apply for multiple fellowships and grants but remarks on the Fulbright being something of an anomaly.
"It's got this odd air around it," Kingsley said. "It's so famous that it's hard to imagine that you are actually able to apply for and maybe even get it."
Kingsley attributes his ability to apply for the fellowship to the "wonderful environment and useful criticism" he received. "Receiving the Fulbright did not happen in a bubble," Kingsley said. "That's a myth we tell ourselves. No matter what, it always takes others to help us achieve our goals."
For more information on the Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad, please click here. For more information on the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, please click here.
List of Students who have received the Fulbright-Hays Scholarship
Liam James Kingsley
List of Students who have received the Fulbright Student Program