16 Johns Hopkins students receive Fulbright grants

Fellowships allow recipients to study, teach, and conduct research abroad

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Sixteen Johns Hopkins University students and recent graduates have been awarded Fulbright grants, earning the chance to travel abroad to study, teach, and conduct research.

Named for the late Sen. J. William Fulbright, who sponsored legislation creating the prestigious scholarship, the Fulbright Scholar Program is the country's largest educational exchange program, offering opportunities for students and young professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching, and school teaching worldwide. Approximately 8,000 grants are awarded each year, and the program operates in more than 155 countries.

With the Fulbright Study/Research grant, a student designs a proposal for a specific country. The program aims to facilitate cultural exchange and promote mutual understanding by supporting study or research abroad.

The recipients are:

  • Himanshu Dashora: After graduating this spring with a BS in biomedical engineering, he will spend a year in Chennai, India, to research cell-to-cell interaction systems to improve stem cell therapies for bone cancer. After that, he plans to pursue a MD/PhD.

  • Callie Deng: She will graduate this year with a degree in biomedical engineering and then travel to Norway, where she will research MRI techniques to improve breast cancer detection. After that she plans to attend medical school.

  • Anna Hasche-Kluender: She graduated in May 2017 with a degree in molecular and cellular biology and is now pursuing a master's in biochemistry and molecular biology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. In Saarbrücken, Germany, she will conduct research on using nanoparticle drug carriers to improve treatment of bacterial vaginosis. She plans to pursue an MD/PhD.

  • Alexander Kossak: He will graduate this year with a bachelor's and master's degree in chemistry and materials science. Next year he will be at the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research in Stuttgart, Germany, working on two-dimensional quantum materials. After that he will begin a PhD in materials science at MIT.

  • Kat Lewis: A 2016 graduate with a degree in Writing Seminars, she will write and research a novel in South Korea. The story will take place in Seoul and engage with the tradition of ghosts in Korean folklore. After returning to the United States, she will work on her novel in the MFA program at the University of San Francisco.

  • Shivani Mehta: She will graduate this year with a degree in public health and will spend the year in Chennai, India to conduct research on identifying and characterizing high prevalence tuberculosis regions using spatial analysis. 

  • Diana Rayes: A 2016 graduate with a master's degree in public health, she will spend the year in Germany at the Charité Universitätsmedizin in Berlin and the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf, researching how Syrian refugees living in Berlin and Hamburg use their faith to cope with the stressors of displacement and integration. 

  • Tomasz Robak: A DMA candidate at the Peabody Institute, he will spend the year in Poland studying and performing the piano music of Polish composers associated with the Szymanowski Academy of Music in Katowice, including Henryk Górecki and Wojciech Kilar.

  • Arunima Vijay: She will graduate this year with a degree in cognitive science, and in Trondheim, Norway, she will research pediatric autism spectrum disorder. After returning to the United States, she plans to attend medical school. 

  • Carolyn Xue: She graduated last year with a bachelor's degree in neuroscience and will spend a year in Musanze, Rwanda, to research the transmission of Cryptosporiodiosis by monitoring gorillas in the Volcanoes National Park.​

The Fulbright English Teaching Assistant, or ETA, programs place students in schools overseas to supplement local English language instruction and to provide a native speaker presence in the classrooms.

The recipients are:

  • Karla Bachiller: She will graduate this year with a degree in neuroscience and minor in French and will travel to Malaysia, where she will work with children in rural areas. Afterward, she plans to attend medical school.

  • Michael Broida: He will graduate this year with an MFA in Creative Writing and will travel to Portugal.

  • Elisabeth Fassas: She graduated last year with a degree in molecular and cellular biology and in Taiwan, she will study Mandarin. After that she plans to go to medical school.

  • Mallika Iyer: After graduating this year with a degree in public health and history and a minor in global environmental change and sustainability, she will live in Mongolia for a year. After the Fulbright, she will pursue a master's degree in social and behavioral interventions from the Bloomberg School of Public Health. 

  • William Theodorou: After graduating this year with a degree in English and the Writing Seminars, he will travel to Bulgaria. After his Fulbright year, William plans to pursue a PhD in early modern English literature. 

  • Sarah Watson: After graduating this year with an MEd in Secondary Mathematics Education, she will spend next year in Malaysia.

Three other Hopkins students were offered Fulbright grants that they declined for other opportunities. Caper Gooden, who graduates this year from SAIS with a master's in international economics and Middle Eastern Studies, was offered a Fulbright grant to Jordan. Senior Laura Bou Delgado received an ETA grant to Moldova. Mollie Cueva-Dabkoski (KSAS 2017) was offered an ETA grant to Spain.

Six other students at Johns Hopkins were named alternates for Fulbright grants this year: senior Esther Rodriguez for a study grant to Ireland; Peabody master's student Tae Ho Hwang for an arts grant to the Netherlands; PhD candidate Arpan Roy for a research grant to Israel; senior Ta-Chung Mou for a research grant to Sweden; Jimena Castellanos-Aguirre (KSAS 2016) for an ETA grant to Spain; and senior Alexandra Rogers for an ETA grant to Thailand.

More than 325,400 students have been awarded Fulbright grants since the program's inception in 1946. The Fulbright is administered by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

For more information about the Fulbright program at Johns Hopkins, visit the National Fellowships Program website.