University of South Florida


A collage of 10 photos of student portraits.

USF earns distinction as Fulbright top producing institution for U.S. students.

Record number of USF students earn prestigious Fulbright Scholarships

By Althea Johnson, University Communications and Marketing

Ten University of South Florida students have been selected as Fulbright Scholars for the 2022-23 academic year, the most in the university’s history and an indication of USF’s growing global engagement. Fulbright, the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, provides unique opportunities for USF students to study abroad, gain a deeper understanding of different cultures and make a positive impact on communities around the world.

Badge graphic that reads, U.S. Student Program, Top Producer, 2022-2023, Fulbright Programs

With 10 students selected, for the first time USF is recognized as one of Fulbright’s top producing institutions. USF is No. 47 among national doctoral institutions and second in the state of Florida, according to rankings first published today by the Chronicle of Higher Education.

“The University of South Florida is proud to have a record number of Fulbright U.S. Student Program recipients and to be named as one of Fulbright’s top producing institutions,” USF President Rhea Law said. “The students and alumni participating in the Fulbright Program are a testament to our university’s commitment to pursuing excellence on a global scale, and I congratulate them on their outstanding achievements.”

USF’s student recipients come from the College of Education, College of Engineering, College of Arts and Sciences, College of Public Health and Judy Genshaft Honors College.

Three men sitting outside on a bench in Ghana.

They include Yoel Gebrai, who is currently in Ghana researching moringa oleifera, a widely cultivated multifunctional crop. The civil engineering doctoral student is developing the framework for assessing moringa oleifera's social, economic and environmental impacts in the country.

“My Fulbright experience has been nothing short of amazing. I have been able to meet so many great people here in Ghana and learned so much about the Ghanaian culture," Gebrai said. "Cross-cultural experiences like this lead to self-reflection and serve to expand your worldview. The memories, experiences, and relationships that I’m forming here in Ghana will serve me well in both my personal and professional life."

A woman in a winter coat, stands in front of a lake with swans.

Another recipient is Sydni Schlosser, who is studying for a master’s degree in the Netherlands. She applied for a Fulbright student grant to learn from another culture and group of researchers about methods in health economics to further explore her interest in health care markets. Schlosser completed her undergraduate education at USF with degrees in economics and cellular and molecular biology.

“Pursuing my master’s degree and performing research has opened me up to a new academic lifestyle and helped me to develop my interests in biotechnology and health care markets and where I hope to fit into it in the future,” Schlosser said. “I feel very fortunate to have been learning from an institution that has developed so many different instruments to measure well-being that are being used worldwide.” 

At USF, Fulbright applicants are guided by the Office of National Scholars. Over the past decade, ONS has helped to produce more than 70 Fulbright U.S. Student Program recipients.

“As Fulbright U.S. Student Program recipients, these students have connected their academic and professional pursuits at the University of South Florida to solving real world challenges in their host communities, leaving lasting and positive impressions,” ONS Director Sayandeb Basu said. “Our students serve as ambassadors for the United States abroad and will return with strengthened cultural competencies, research and teaching skills, thus impacting their home communities in Tampa Bay and beyond.”

Awarding approximately 2,000 grants per year, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program aims to build lasting ties between the U.S. and other countries, as it operates in 160 countries across the globe.

Since its inception in 1946, more than 400,000 individuals from all backgrounds and fields have participated in the Fulbright program – including recent university graduates, teachers, scientists, researchers, artists and others.

To learn more about the ten Fulbright Scholars, click here.

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