LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 24, 2009) − Three University of Kentucky students were selected to receive government-funded Fulbright Scholarships for graduate study and research abroad for the 2009-2010 academic year.
"The three Fulbrights awarded to UK students demonstrates how competitive our students are for prestigious scholarships," commented Lisa Broome-Price, director of the UK Office of External Scholarships. "Advising students as they compete for the Fulbright and other prestigious honors is just one way the university continues to work toward the goal set by Provost Subbaswamy of increasing opportunities for international and multicultural educational experiences for UK students. I’m delighted that these excellent students will have the opportunity to pursue their educational objectives overseas and to contribute to increased understanding between the U.S. and their host countries.”
The Fulbright Fellowship Program, funded by Congress, is a national grant competition for U.S. citizens or permanent residents to work and/or study abroad during the course of their studies or after graduation. Grants cover travel and living costs for the academic year and necessary tuition at overseas universities. The goal of the program is to increase understanding between the United States and foreign countries. Selection for any Fulbright Student Program emphasizes leadership potential, academic and/or professional excellence, and commitment to mutual understanding.
UK’s newest Fulbright fellows are: Allison Harnish, a doctoral student studying anthropology, who will do research in Zambia; Ross Lovely, a 2008 UK College of Law graduate, who will work on his Master of Laws degree in polar law in Iceland; and Aeleka Schortman, a doctoral student in anthropology, who will do research in Honduras.
Harnish, the daughter of Bruce and Linda Harnish of Dayton, Ohio, holds bachelor's degrees in anthropology, criminology and sociology from Western Kentucky University. While working on her doctoral degree in anthropology at UK, Harnish is also pursuing a graduate certificate in gender and women's studies.
Harnish will use her Fulbright to conduct research toward her doctoral dissertation, which builds on the longitudinal Gwembe Tonga Research Project (GTRP), an ongoing 50-year study that has investigated social and environmental consequences of resettlement following the construction of Zambia’s Kariba Dam in the 1950s. As one facet of her project, she will observe age- and gender-based effects of deforestation among a community of Gwembe Tonga migrants living outside Zambia’s Kafue National Park.
Upon completing her doctoral degree, Harnish hopes to take a post-doctoral position that will support continued research into the political and social dimensions of global environmental change. As a professional anthropologist, she aspires to contribute to both academic and applied research, producing work that engages existing social theory while still being pertinent for wider audiences.
Lovely, the son of Bernie and Sylvia Lovely of Lexington, holds a bachelor's degree from Centre College, a master's degree from the UK Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce, and his juris doctor from UK College of Law.
Lovely will use his Fulbright funding to work toward a Master of Laws degree in polar law at the University of Akureyri in Akureyri, Iceland. Polar law is a developing area of law based on changes taking place at the poles, primarily due to climate change. Lovely is pursuing polar law because of his interest in energy, security, environment, human rights and trade ramifications related to climate change.
Upon completing a degree in polar law, Lovely hopes to be a professor of chemistry.
Schortman, the daughter of Edward and Patricia Urban of Gambier, Ohio, holds bachelor's degrees in anthropology and psychology from Grinnell College. She is currently pursuing her doctorate in anthropology at UK.
Schortman plans to use her Fulbright to continue conducting dissertation research on food choice and acquisition in an industrializing and urbanizing peri-urban community in northern Honduras. The anthropology scholar did preliminary research in the same region of the country in the summer of 2008.
Upon completion of her doctoral degree, Schortman intends to pursue both anthropological research and a teaching career in anthropology.
U.S. Congress created the Fulbright program in 1946, upon conclusion of World War II, to foster mutual understanding among nations through educational and cultural exchange. Senator J. William Fulbright, sponsor of the legislation, considered it a step toward building an alternative to armed conflict. The U.S. student program awards approximately 1,500 grants annually and currently operates in more than 155 countries worldwide.