Luther College students receive Fulbright awards

The Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board has announced that Laura Harney, class of 2013; Kimberly Horner, class of 2011; and Matthew Lind, class of 2013, have been selected for Fulbright awards for the 2013-14 academic year.

A highly competitive award, the Fulbright foreign scholarship provides funds for a year's educational experience abroad, including travel, health insurance and a living stipend.

Harney, from Rochester, Minn., is a Spanish and biology major. She will serve as an English teaching assistant in Ecuador.

Harney chose to teach in order to connect with students through open dialogue and discovery. While she believes mutual respect between teacher and student is essential, it is also the teacher's duty to encourage students to think critically and question the world around them.

She once spent five months studying abroad in Cuenca, Ecuador, and volunteered at Insituto Piloto, a grade school for children with disabilities. She hopes to continue volunteering with such children as well as compile the personal philosophies of her fellow educators.

Horner, from Logansport, Ind., is an anthropology major. She will serve as an English teaching assistant in Malta.

Horner chose Malta because of the depth and complexity of the nation's culture, including a 7,000-year history boasting the oldest freestanding structures in the world and imprints of Mediterranean, European and African cultures. She hopes to use the grammar skills she gained working as an editor for Free River Press and the Anthropology of East Europe Review to help Maltese students express themselves in English language research papers, narratives and poems. As someone dedicated to personal health, Horner also plans to work with students in sports programs that boost well-being and confidence.

Horner intends to devote her professional career to promoting community development. Drawing on her time spent in multicultural settings, she will continue helping individuals of all backgrounds live, work and grow together.

Lind, from Wausau, Wis., is an international studies and political science major. He will serve as an English teaching assistant in Turkey.

Lind was drawn to Turkey by his fascination with its culture and admiration for the country's secular model of government. He hopes his previous instructional experience helps him develop a teaching style capable of keeping both student and teacher actively engaged in the subject matter.

Once he returns from Turkey, Lind plans to study law and eventually pursue a career in international law. He hopes to use his experience abroad to establish mutually beneficial international relationships and help build an environment that celebrates both commonalities and differences between nations.

These students submitted their post-graduate education proposals to the Fulbright program through the college's honors advisory committee. The presidentially appointed 12-member Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board makes final selections.

Sponsored by the State Department, the Fulbright is the largest U.S. international exchange program, offering opportunities for students, scholars and professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching and teaching in elementary and secondary schools worldwide.

Grantees are expected to become involved in the communities in which they travel and serve during their year abroad to increase understanding between the people of the United States and the people of the more than 150 countries that currently participate in the Fulbright Program.

The program, introduced to Congress by Senator J. William Fulbright, was established in 1946 to foster leadership, learning and empathy between cultures. Since its inception, approximately 300,000 Fulbrighters have participated in the program.

Fulbright scholars have been awarded more than 40 Nobel Prizes. Fulbright alumni have become heads of state, cabinet ministers, ambassadors, heads of corporations, artists, university presidents, journalists, professors and teachers. Among the most famous grantees are actor John Lithgow, composer Philip Glass, opera singer Renee Fleming and poet Silvia Plath.

Luther senior Laura Harney
Luther alumna Kimberly Horner
Luther senior Matt Lind