Georgia College public health and world languages graduate Amara Tennessee of Roswell, Georgia, received an English Teaching Assistantship to Columbia.
Photo: Georgia College via Globe Newswire
Photo: Georgia College via Globe Newswire

2 Georgia College grads named Fulbright finalists

Two recent Georgia College graduates have been named Fulbright finalists.

According to a news release from the public liberal arts university, Madison Graham of Louisville, Georgia, and Amara Tennessee of Roswell, Georgia, are Fulbright scholarship recipients. Laura Swarner of Buford, Georgia is an alternate.

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Created in 1946, the Fulbright Program sends American scholars and professionals abroad to lecture or conduct research for up to a year.

“These students represent the best and brightest at Georgia College, mentored by our amazing faculty and staff,” Dr. Costas Spirou, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, said in a statement. “It’s a true testament of their excellence that they've been recognized as Fulbright finalists,”

Due to the coronavirus, the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) announced it “will delay the start of several components of the 2020-2021 Fulbright U.S. Student Program until after January 1, 2021.”

The start may be revised depending on changes in travel warnings and restrictions.

Included in Georgia College’s 2020 Fulbright recipients and alternate, according to the news release, are: 

  • Music graduate Madison Graham of Louisville will do an English Teaching Assistantship in the Czech Republic. He hopes to volunteer at a Basic Art School there, which is the primary venue for art education in the Czech school system. He also plans to join a Czech performing ensemble and explore the country's rich culture. After getting a master's degree, Graham wants to work in arts education. 
  • Amara Tennessee of Roswell has double degrees in public health and world languages. She'll do an English Teaching Assistantship in Columbia, hosting a program on health behavior and attitudes. In the future, Tennessee hopes to work in global health, reducing the incidence of chronic disease through health education and programming. 
  • Laura Swarner of Buford has double degrees in English and theatre. As an alternate, she could do an English Teaching Assistantship in Bulgaria. She's passionate about storytelling and hopes to use it as a tool for language development. Swarner also hopes to get her master's in scenic design and work as an artist telling stories that “help shift perspectives.”

Georgia College had 15 applicants this year and nine were named semi-finalists, a record for the university, according to Anna Whiteside, assistant director of the Honors Program and coordinator of Georgia College's National Scholarships Office. 

Georgia College music graduate Madison Graham of Louisville, Georgia, received an English Teaching Assistantship to the Czech Republic.
Photo: Georgia College via Globe Newswire

“All of our candidates this year worked very hard on their applications for this competitive program and I am very excited that, once again, Georgia College students will be representing the United States in the Fulbright Program,” Whiteside said.

In the 2019-2020 year, University of Georgia, Spelman College, Morehouse College, Georgia Tech, Emory University, Georgia State University, Kennesaw State University, University of West Georgia, Mercer University, Georgia Gwinnett College, Clayton State University, Georgia College & State University, Columbus State University, Savannah College of Art and Design, Georgia Southern and the University of North Georgia have all had students and scholars who have received Fulbright awards.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program receives about 12,000 applications a year. In the U.S., about 1,900 grants are awarded annually in all fields of study in over 140 countries. There have been more than 360,000 Fulbright recipients since its inception. 

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