LAWRENCE — Five University of Kansas students received prestigious Fulbright awards for research, study or English teaching as an assistant abroad for the 2013-14 academic year.
The Fulbright program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields.
The U.S. Student Fulbright program operates in more than 155 countries worldwide. Fulbright grants provide funding for round-trip travel, maintenance for one academic year, health and accident insurance and, where relevant, tuition. Since the program’s inception in 1946, 443 KU students, including this year’s awardees, have been awarded Fulbrights.
The Office of International Programs coordinates applications for Fulbright grants.
Jamie Branch, Topeka, graduated in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering. She has received a Fulbright grant to New Zealand, where she will work within a biomechanics research group at the University of Auckland, evaluating the kinematics and kinetics that affect the knee joint in individuals with cerebral palsy. This will prepare Branch with the background and experience to apply similar analysis to persons with Down syndrome later in her graduate career. Branch has additionally been awarded a Whitaker Fellowship, which supports international work in the area of bioengineering and related fields. See a video about Branch's work here.
Chelsea Hochstetler, of Topeka, graduated in December 2012 with a Bachelor of General Studies in anthropology and a minor in global and international studies. She has received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant award for Indonesia. Hochstetler has been both a conversation leader and a student teaching assistant in the Applied English Center at KU. She also has completed coursework in Spanish, French and Latin as an undergraduate. In addition to her Fulbright teaching assignment, her community volunteer project will allow her use topics related to American culture to assist adult residents at her assigned Indonesia location in learning basic English.
Olivia Jamandre, Evanston, Ill., is pursuing a Doctorate of Musical Arts in piano performance in the School of Music at KU. She has received a Fulbright grant to study composer Jean Sibelius’ piano music at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland. Jamandre will study under Erik Tawaststjerna, taking classes at the academy and examining original manuscripts of compositions. She will in particular research the influence of folk music in Sibelius’ piano work and intends to share that knowledge with the American public. Jamandre holds a bachelor’s degree from University of Texas at San Antonio and a master’s degree from Northwestern University.
Alison Miller, Arlington Heights, Ill., is pursuing a Doctorate in History of Art. She has received a Fulbright grant to Japan, where she will research the political significance of the image of Empress Teimei in a variety of visual materials. Miller will focus on issues of gender and class, and she plans to conduct her investigations at the Research Library of Tobunken, at National Research Institute of Cultural Properties, Tokyo. She will also visit several other galleries and shrines and spend the second half of the grant period investigating her subject in the Archives of the Imperial Household Agency.
Eileen Remley, Miltonvale, graduated in May 2012 with the Bachelor of Arts in English and in global and international studies. She has been selected for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant award in Turkey. Remley’s focus is on global understanding through international experiences, which involve exchanging ideas and establishing cooperative relationships. As an undergraduate, she studied for one semester at University of Costa Rica, residing with a host family. After Remley graduated, she taught English in Spain. While an ETA in Turkey, she plans also to volunteer as an English conversation leader in a local school, acquiring familiarity with the educational system and sharing knowledge of American culture through group activities.
In addition to these students, six more have been designated as alternates for Fulbright grants:
- Kelsey Adkins, Overland Park, graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish and in global and international studies in December 2011. She is an alternate for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Brazil.
- Drew Burks, Fort Worth, Texas, is a doctoral student in eastern European history. He is an alternate for a Fulbright research grant in Poland.
- Audrey Peterson, St. George, graduated in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in East Asian languages and cultures and in Spanish. She is an alternate for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Colombia.
- Sheridan Stewart, Belton, Mo., graduated in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in sociology. He is an alternate for study and research in Luxembourg.
- David Trimbach, Chicago, is a doctoral student in geography. He is an alternate for research in Estonia.
- Kristopher Velasco, Louisville, Kan., graduated in May 2013 with a Bachelor of Arts in political science and in sociology. He is an alternate for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Turkey.