A Boon to Research

Graduate students awarded Fulbright Fellowships to pursue projects abroad

Selected on the basis of their academic and professional achievements, as well as their record of service and leadership potential in their respective fields, four graduate students at UC Santa Barbara have been awarded Fulbright Fellowships to conduct research abroad.

This highly competitive fellowship 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 the people of other countries.

“As the previous campus director for the UCSB Fulbright Program, I am absolutely delighted to see the continued success of our students,” said Robert Hamm, assistant dean of UCSB’s Graduate Division. “These awards will certainly be a boon to their research projects and a life-altering cultural experience.”

In total, 21 students from UCSB applied for Fulbright Fellowships. Four were selected as finalists, 5 were named as alternates, and 4 were selected as semi-finalists for the 2020-21 award cycle. 

The winning fellows, their departments and projects are:

• Mattie Webb, Department of History, “Diplomacy at Work: The South African Worker and the Sullivan Principles on the Shop Floor”

• Mika Thornburg, Department of History, “Guiding Differences and Desires: Japanese Women Brokering Postwar US-Japan Relations”

• Kandra Polatis, Department of History, “Death and the Diseased Body: Disease Management and Burial Regulations in Imperial Japan”

• Christopher Ozuna, from the Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, “Understanding Features of Teacher Preparation for Denmark’s Changing Classrooms”

“The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides an incredible opportunity for UCSB students to gain experience researching and teaching abroad,” said Shawn Warner, director of professional development in UCSB Graduate Division. “Here at the Graduate Student Resource Center, we strive to support students in a number of ways as they apply for these prestigious awards. We offer info sessions, one-on-one advising and a binder of past successful applications so that students can compose the strongest application possible. We are very proud of the success of our student applicants this year, and we are excited to see the fruits of their work abroad in the coming years.”

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