Three Broncos head overseas as Fulbright scholars, more alternates and semifinalists named

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Photo by Kristen McPeek

Boise State has a reputation for advising a record number of students who receive Fulbright scholarships. These scholarships send students to international destinations for higher education, advanced research and university teaching opportunities, or primary and secondary education. Grace Hall, Hannah Johnson and Macy Shane are this year’s Boise State Fulbright Scholars out of eight semifinalists representing the university, which includes three alternates who may also receive scholarships if additional funding becomes available, as well as two unselected who are always named semi-finalists.

Grace Hall, 2022 Fulbright Scholar and Boise State Top Ten Scholar

Grace Hall, an interdisciplinary major with accents in political science, Arab and world studies and a 2022 Top Ten Scholar, will return to Jordan, where she studied abroad in high school, as part of an assistantship program teaching in English (ETA). This program places Fulbright scholars in schools abroad to supplement local English language instruction and to ensure the presence of a native speaker in classrooms.

“My scholarship advisor Kate Huebschmann and the Honors College were instrumental in my journey to receiving this scholarship,” Hall said. “Kate has helped me show that the path to success is not a straight line, but rather that it continually changes, learns and grows, opening up even better opportunities.”

Huebschmann is a vital resource for students seeking prestigious national scholarships. Honors College has helped 73 students with their Fulbright applications since opening its scholarship advisory office in 2014, and 34% (or 25 of those students) have won awards.

As a Fulbright scholarship recipient and teacher for a year in Jordan, Hall will plan a community engagement project with local empowerment programs for women and girls that focus on educational and economic opportunity. She will use her Arabic language skills to connect and mentor young Jordanian girls and refugees, continuing the positive impact she had in Boise, as a founder of the Boise State Arabic Club, Arabic tutor and participant in World Language Resource Center course. project where she mentored and taught local refugees. Hall wants to pursue a career in foreign policy in Washington, DC, promoting development in the Middle East by supporting women’s education, empowerment, and economic opportunity.

Hannah Johnson, 2022 Fulbright Scholar

Hannah Johnson, an Elementary Education major with an Intermediate Spanish Certificate, travels to Spain to teach in a bilingual, Spanish- and English-speaking school. She is passionate about teaching English to non-native speakers and looks forward to hands-on experience in a new country and culture. She hopes to improve the bilingual education of students in the United States when she returns to the United States after the scholarship.

“It is quite an honor to receive an opportunity like this and I feel lucky to have been chosen from so many students across the country,” she said.

Johnson acknowledges Huebschmann, faculty, and staff at the College of Education for their knowledge, guidance, and support when she applied for the scholarship—a time-consuming application process and many rounds of editing.

“Kate has been the beacon of a crazy storm applying for Fulbright,” she added. “I’m very grateful to the people who helped me through this process, because they were the people I leaned on the most.”

Macy Shane, 2022 Fulbright Scholar

Macy Shane, an interdisciplinary major with emphasis in French and linguistics with an Enabling Services certificate, will complete her graduate studies in Canada as a Fulbright Scholar. She looks forward to immersing herself in French-Canadian culture and learning about Quebec pedagogy and its school system.

“Growing up in Idaho, I never thought I would have such an opportunity and it means the world to me,” she said.

Shane says this scholarship will prepare her to teach French at the preschool and elementary levels. And when she returns to the United States, she hopes to champion world language teaching standards in elementary school, teach in a French immersion elementary school, and one day open her own French immersion preschool.

“My advisor Josh Baros from the TRIO Teacher Preparation Program has been a wonderful source of encouragement and helping me to try my luck and consider applying more,” she said. “And my Fulbright advisor, Kate Huebschmann, was also very helpful throughout the application process and I will be forever grateful for her support.”

“Failure doesn’t exist, just an opportunity to learn about yourself, grow, and bounce back even stronger,” Hall said as he reflected on some of the barriers to getting the scholarship. “For any student, winning a prestigious scholarship such as Fulbright is the highlight of an academic career. However, receiving this means so much more to me than a title I can display.

Alternate Fulbright scholars include Boise State student Ashley Sagrero, anthropology major and Mexico ETA; Evan Fishburn, student of English Literature and ETA from the Czech Republic; and Elizabeth Bohnstedt, psychology major and Spain ETA. Unselected semi-finalists include Ashton Caldwell, majoring in communication and marketing and ETA from the Czech Republic, and Kendra Peterson in the graduate program in organizational performance and workplace learning and ETA from South Korea.

Learn more about the American Fulbright Student Program.

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