Fulbright Scholars Prepare to Depart for the U.S.

In a sign of the continued vitality of U.S.-India people-to-people ties, 98 Fulbright scholars are gathering at the Lalit Hotel in New Delhi for a three-day pre-departure orientation designed to introduce them to the academic, social, and cultural environment of the United States, and stimulate thought about their role as cultural ambassadors. A total of 148 Fulbright scholars from India, including 109 Fulbright-Nehru fellows and eight Fulbright-Kalam fellows, have been selected to study, teach, and conduct research in the United States during the 2018-19 academic year.

“This is a time for us to welcome these scholars to the Fulbright family and to brief them on the program,” Adam Grotsky, Executive Director of the United States-India Educational Foundation (USIEF) said. “This is also a great time for the scholars to get to know each other and experience first-hand the incredible diversity of the program and its participants.”

The Fulbrighters attending the pre-departure orientation represent 21 states and two union territories of India. They also represent a wide range of disciplines, including agricultural science, anthropology, education, environmental studies, public health, urban and regional planning, and women and gender studies, among others.

Dr. Faesal Shah, recipient of the 2018 Fulbright-Nehru Master’s Fellowship at Harvard Kennedy School said, “This scholarship will give me an opportunity to design and evaluate appropriate public policy interventions so that public expenditure can be linked to measurable outcomes.” Faesal, an Indian Administrative Service Officer from the Jammu and Kashmir cadre, is eager to return to his home state and continue his work in the development sector.

Dr. Pooyath Lekshmy Venugopalan, recipient of 2018 Fulbright-Nehru Postdoctoral Research Fellowship, will pursue research in the field of micromotors at the University of California-San Diego. “This fellowship will allow me to learn various techniques and skills for developing and modifying micromotors for specific biological applications ranging from bio-sensors to therapeutics in India,” Pooyath said.

The Fulbright Program offers grants to qualified Indian graduate students to study at the graduate level in the United States. USIEF is currently inviting applications for its annual competition for Fulbright-Nehru, Fulbright-Kalam, and other Fulbright fellowships. USIEF expects to offer approximately 100 Fulbright-Nehru and eight Fulbright-Kalam Climate Fellowships to Indian applicants in 2019. Fellowship details are posted on the USIEF website (www.usief.org.in) and the first application deadline is June 15, 2018.