Three recent grads earn Fulbright awards

Three recent graduates have won prestigious Fulbright awards for the 2013-14 academic year.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program provides opportunities for students, recent graduates and young professionals to conduct independent study/research projects abroad or serve as Fulbright English Teaching Assistants.

Photo of international flags.

Erdem Durgunoglu, who graduated last fall with a master's in anthropology, won a research grant to study Turkish butchery practices and the Turkish slow food movement. He will use his Fulbright to research and write a book about the link between Turkish butchery practices and Turkish culture.

Meredith Simpson, who graduated with a master's in elementary education with bilingual authorization, will be an English Teaching Assistant in Mexico. Phung Nguyen, who graduated with a master's in education with an emphasis in equity and social justice, will be an English Teaching Assistant in South Korea.

"Being selected as a Fulbright scholar is an honor, and it really is a transformative experience for our students and alumni," said Joy Viveros, fellowships advisor at SF State. "These individuals are joining an elite rank of people who have been assessed to be academically excellent and capable of representing the United States abroad."

Viveros noted that it takes months of hard work to pull off a successful Fulbright application. However, she and the University's Fellowships Office are on hand to advise students through each step of the process and provide feedback on application essays.

Students should allow 6-12 months to prepare an application for a research grant and 3-6 months for applications to the English Teaching Assistant program, Viveros said. Current students must apply through SF State, and former students may apply independently or through the University as their alumni institution.

For more information on the Fulbright U.S. Student Program, and how to apply at SF State, visit the Fellowships Office website at:

--Elaine Bible