6 Awarded Fulbright Scholarships

Three Rollins students earn Fulbright research grants, the College’s highest number in a single year.

(Photo by Scott Cook) (Photo by Scott Cook)

Six Rollins students were awarded 2015 – 16 Fulbright scholarships to participate in a federally administered international exchange program that fosters cultural understanding and mutual solutions to global concerns.

Katherine Barnekow ’15, Megan Mascarenhas ’14, and Katia Chadaideh ’15 were selected for highly competitive Fulbright research grants to continue their respective studies. Gabriela Hochberg ’15, Kaitlyn Aklass ’15, and Brenna McKee ’15 will spend time in host countries teaching English as a foreign language.

Since its first Fulbright Award in 1951, Rollins has produced a total of 63 recipients (38 of whom have been named since 2006). 

Kaitlyn Alkass ’15
Major: English
Country: Bulgaria
“I hope to share my love of the English language with my students and provide them means of further artistic expression through both creative and academic writing. I plan to apply skills that I developed during my time at The Sandspur and as an intern with What's Up TV UK to my school’s newspaper and local television program in Sofia. I also plan on joining Sofia’s standup comedy community—and if it currently doesn't exist, I’ll create one.”

Katherine Barnekow ’15
Major: Philosophy
Country: Ireland
“Over the next year, I’ll be pursuing a master’s degree in sexuality studies at Dublin City University. This work will further my studies in the fields of gender and sexuality, eventually making me a more effective legal and policy advocate for women, while allowing me to gain a deepened understanding and appreciation of cultures other than the one I was raised in. I’m thrilled to undertake this next challenge.”

Katia Chadaideh ’15
Major: Biology, anthropology
Country: Spain
“My Fulbright studies would have taken me to the University of Murcia to conduct a research project on Neanderthal subsistence strategies in southeastern Spain. Neanderthals persisted in the Iberian Peninsula for much longer than in the rest of Continental Europe.”
* Chadaideh chose to pursue a doctorate in human evolutionary biology at Harvard.

Gabriela Hochberg ’15
Major: Anthropology, English
Country: Turkey
“There is a danger in a single story, which is what the Muslim community is facing today; there is only violence and fear because that is all we are ever shown. However, this completely destroys the global value Muslims have to offer. My hope is that through my English teaching, I can help Muslims start their own dialogue and be able to dismantle the single story on a globalized scale.”

Megan Mascarenhas ’14
Major: Music
Country: Austria
“I will teach English to German students at a secondary school and will study at die Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien (the University for Music and Performing Arts in Vienna) under the guidance and expertise of Dr. Andreas Holzer. My research pertains to the music of Joseph Marx (1882-1964), an accomplished fin-de-siècle composer, pianist, music critic, and university professor.”

Brenna McKee ’15
Major: International relations, history
Country: Vietnam
“Vietnam is an exciting and rapidly developing country, yet one that is often misunderstood. This year marks the 40th anniversary of the end of the American conflict in Vietnam and 20 years since the normalization of relations between our governments, but the country still seems like a taboo subject shrouded in mystery. I hope to be a part of the solution to this problem.”

Alternates from Rollins
• Daniel Udell ’15, English teaching assistant, South Korea
• Kenther Ramos ’14, international relations, United Kingdom
• Tian Sang ’15, English teaching assistant, Taiwan
• Michael Watson ’15, English teaching assistant, Taiwan
• Shelby McGuire ’15, English teaching assistant, South Africa

About the Fulbright Program
Fulbright recipients are among more than 40,000 individuals participating in U.S. Department of State exchange programs each year. For more than 60 years, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs has funded and supported programs that seek to promote mutual understanding and respect between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program is administered by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, a division of the Institute of International Education.

According to CIES, The Fulbright Program awards approximately 8,000 grants annually. Roughly 1,600 U.S. students, 4,000 foreign students, 1,200 U.S. scholars, and 900 visiting scholars receive awards, in addition to several hundred teachers and professionals. Approximately 310,000 “Fulbrighters” have participated in the Program since its inception in 1946.

The program is named for Sen. J. William Fulbright of Arkansas (1905-1995), the longest-serving chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.

Rollins students interested in applying for the Fulbright program should contact Jayashree Shivamoggi in the external and competitive scholarships office at jshivamoggi@rollins.edu or 407-646-2346.