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Fulbright Record

Fulbright Grants Awarded to Fourteen 2006 Graduates and Four Alumnae

Pitzer College achieved a record 18 Fulbright Fellowships for the 2006-07 academic year. Fourteen 2006 graduates and four alumnae have been awarded Fulbright grants to continue in their fields of study in either a teaching or research capacity. Pitzer College has exceeded its last year’s Fulbright national record of nine 2005 graduates and one alumnus fellowship for schools of its size.

The 2006-07 Fulbright awardees include Bianca Barragan ’06 (South Korea); Veronica Briggs ’02 (Indonesia); Chris Burwick ’06 (Germany); Rainbow Chung ’06 (China); Yvonne Hong ’05 (Turkey); Patrick Leue ’06 (Venezuela); Alex Page ’06 (South Korea); Blair McGregor ’06 (South Korea); Kate Sherwood ’06 (Thailand); Raumene Rahatzad ’06 (Azerbaijan); Sabrina Dence ’06 (Panama); Michelle Swanson Lightfoot ’06 (Spain); Katrina Sitar ’06 (Moldova); Kathleen Brooks ’06 (Bosnia-Herzegovina); Traci Kutaka ’06 (South Korea); Julia Terlinchamp '04 (Bulgaria), Casey Scieszka '06 (Mali) and Pauline J. Yao ’93 (China). Kathleen Brooks will be the first Fulbright representative ever to Bosnia-Herzegovina and Casey Scieszka will be Pitzer's first Fulbright to Mali.

“Our Fulbright scholars reflect the global perspective of the College’s curriculum, the excellence of its study abroad programs and the high scholarship of its students,” Pitzer College President Laura Skandera Trombley said.

A few years ago, Pitzer College had just a handful of Fulbright Fellowship nominees, mostly Political Studies majors. Now the College nominates talented students from across the College–including those traditionally underrepresented in Fulbright competition: students of color; “non-traditional” age students; science students; recent alumni; and men.

Our Fulbright nominees this year included 10 Latinos, seven Asian Americans, one Native American and one African American. A further three students were of Middle Eastern origin and one of Romany. Of our 16 awardees three are Latina, five are Asian American, one is Iranian American and one is Romany American.

Several awardees were the first generation in their family to attend college. Two were non-traditional age New Resources students–Katrina Sitar and Blair McGregor (who came to Pitzer after serving in the U.S. Army).

Three awardees (Rainbow Chung, Sabrina Dence and Yvonne Hong) were science majors, two others (Veronica Briggs and Michelle Swanson Lightfoot) were pre-med.

The key to Pitzer students’ success in gaining Fulbright Fellowships has been widening access to high quality programming. The Costa Rica program provided access to science-oriented students (four of whom have won awards). Professor Melinda Herrold-Menzies’ summer research project in China and Russia provided the opportunity for a non-traditional student (Blair McGregor) to study abroad.

Most of the students were in Pitzer cultural immersion Study Abroad programs or other programs in which they studied a foreign language. These programs provide Pitzer students with great intellectual and personal depth and make them formidable candidates for post-graduate fellowships.

The flagship international educational program sponsored by the United States government, the Fulbright Program is designed to “increase mutual understanding between the people of the U.S. and the people of other countries.” With this goal, the Fulbright Program has provided more than 250,000 participants—chosen for their academic merit and leadership potential—with the opportunity to study and teach in each other’s countries, exchange ideas and develop joint solutions to address shared concerns.

The Fulbright Program was established in 1946 under legislation introduced by former Sen. J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. Approximately 250,000 “Fulbrighters,” 94,000 from the United States and 155,600 from other countries, have participated in the program since its inception more than 50 years ago. The Fulbright Program awards approximately 4,500 new grants annually.

Fulbright alumni include Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners, governors and senators, ambassadors and artists, prime ministers and heads of state, professors and scientists, Supreme Court justices and CEOs.