Announcing the British Fulbright Scholars for 2018-19

The US-UK Fulbright Commission is pleased to announce the British scholars from its new cohort.

For the 2018-19 academic year, 39 British scholars will be going on exchange to study, lecture and/or research in the US. This cohort includes researchers, visiting lecturers, postgraduate students, and other professionals across a wide range of disciplines.

Among this year’s recipients are:

  • Joe Duffy – Queen’s University Belfast to Belmont University, Tennessee, and New York University. Joe will be Fulbright’s first UK social work scholar since 1967 and will be going to the US to do work sharing best practice in social work teaching methods and plans to work with people affected by 9/11. By bringing this perspective to social work classroom teaching, Joe will be replicating his work with victims and survivors of ‘the Troubles’ in Northern Ireland.
  • Eilidh Hall – University of Aberdeen to Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas. Eilidh is at the forefront of Latinx Studies in the UK and is going to the US not only to experience life at the US-Mexico border and volunteer in the communities there, but also to work on her forthcoming monograph and bring back ideas to expand and development Latinx Studies in the UK, where it is currently an underrepresented field.
  • Pawel Swietach (University of Oxford to Moffit Cancer Centre, Florida) and Stuart Williamson (University of Manchester Cancer Research UK Institute to Stanford University) – the first recipients of the new Fulbright Cancer Research UK Award, which aims to build capacity and accelerate progress in priority areas in cancer research by facilitating collaboration and building links between UK and US research groups.
  • Catherine Penman – University of Edinburgh to NYU. Catherine’s Master’s is in Experimental Humanities and as a writer, she is particularly interested in how literature can be used to empower subordinated groups. Catherine speaks openly about her dyslexia, which she is determined to bring into social awareness, and she has used her position as sponsored semi-pro skateboarder to empower women in male-dominated environments.

Meet the UK grantees

The 39 scholars recently celebrated their success at a reception at the new US Embassy in London and were able to meet programme alumni, Commissioners and the US Ambassador to the UK. The event also formed part of the US-UK Fulbright Commission’s 70th anniversary celebrations.

Penny Egan CBE, Executive Director, US-UK Fulbright Commission said:

“This year, the US-UK Fulbright Commission celebrates 70 years of educational and cultural exchange and the valuable research partnerships that have developed as a result. This cohort of 39 British Fulbright scholars will continue this tradition, by studying and conducting research at a diverse range of institutions across the United States, immersing themselves in another culture and developing closer bonds between our two countries.”

Fulbright alumna Kathryn Perera, who researched community organising at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in 2015-16 through the Fulbright-All Disciplines Scholar Award, said:

“Fulbright was the first time that I felt seen and recognised, not for my technical competence, but for my ability to lead, and by that, I mean my ability to enable other people to access opportunities, to see the world in different ways, to bring that knowledge back… It changed the way that I saw myself and the way that I saw the world.”

The Commission selects scholars through a rigorous application and interview process. In selecting grantees, the Commission looks not only for academic excellence but a focused application, a range of extracurricular and community activities, demonstrated ambassadorial skills, a desire to further the Fulbright programme and a plan to give back to the recipient’s home country upon returning.

Notes to Editors 

  1. For press enquiries, contact Kirsty Callaghan, Communications Manager, 0207 498 4020,
  2. The US-UK Fulbright Commission was founded by diplomatic treaty in 1948, to foster intercultural understanding between the USA and the UK through educational exchange. It continues to support Senator Fulbright’s vision through scholarship and summer programmes, enabling British and American citizens to study, research or teach at universities on either side of the Atlantic.
  3. The Fulbright Awards are a bi-lateral transatlantic scholarship programme, allowing US enabling British and American citizens to study, research or teach in any discipline at any accredited university in each other’s countries. Full details regarding the Awards, including the selection criteria, benefits and Awards categories, can be found on our website.
  4. There have been over 23,000 Fulbright exchanges between our two countries so far.
  5. As part of the EducationUSA network, the Commission also offers British students free, accurate, and comprehensive information about opportunities to study at accredited universities in the USA. They organise USA College Day, the largest US university fair in Europe.