At the core of W&M’s mission lies the objective to “cultivate creative thinkers, principled leaders, and compassionate global citizens equipped for lives of meaning and distinction.” It is with great excitement that, year after year, MLL witnesses our students flourish and build bridges domestically and at a global scale. This is especially evident in W&M’s extremely successful record with the Fulbright Program.
U.S. President Harry S. Truman established the Fulbright Program in 1946, in the aftermath of World War II, to “to increase mutual understanding, and support friendly and peaceful relations between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.” As it celebrates its 75th anniversary, the program operates in 160 countries, and “funds American citizens to study, conduct research, or teach English abroad.” Fulbright Scholarships are highly selective – 39 awardees have served as heads of state or government; 60 have received Nobel Prizes – and W&M students do extremely well when it comes to snagging them. This award cycle, eight W&M seniors and recent alums have received an award, and six additional ones have been selected as alternates. Of the 12 students identified, 8 have majored in MLL or RPSS, and 3 further students have taken advanced coursework with us.
In Modern Languages and Literatures, we are proud to contribute to our students’ success. Our language classes empower them to effectively engage in cross-cultural communication by meeting people in their own idiom. Our cultural studies classes challenge our students to understand with nuance and analyze with cultural sensitivity the stories and the worldviews of the communities with which they’ll work. Congratulations!