Congratulations to the Columbia University Affiliates Awarded a 2024 - 2025 Fulbright US Student Grant


Pictured (left to right): Taylor Briggs, CC’24; Adina Cazacu-De Luca, CC’24; Lucy Davis, GS’23; Katey Eickhoff, CC’24; Kay Galarza, CC’24; Kambi Gathesha, GS’24; Eben Hess, CC’24; Clara Amanda Hu, CC’24; Ashley H Kim, SEAS’24; Joya Kumar, CC’23; Jolie L’Heureux, CC’24; Isaac Loomis, CC’24; Maya Mitrasinovic, CC’22; Jasper Ludington, CC’24; Munirat Suleiman, CC’24; Habiba Odogba, CC’23; Tim Vanable, CC’24; Dennis Zhang, CC’24. Not pictured: Sophia Abrahamson, CC’24; Emma Glajchen, SEAS’22; Nikhil Patel, CC’24; Victor Swezey, CC’24


TWENTY - FIVE Columbia University graduates and alumni have been awarded 2024 - 2025 Fulbright U.S. Student grants, which offer funding for graduating seniors and young alumni/ae to undertake independent research projects, graduate study, or English-language teaching positions within classrooms around the world. Read below to learn more about those who have accepted the grants!

Sophia Abrahamson, CC’24

Originally from Los Angeles, CA, Sophia majored in biochemistry at Columbia. While conducting oncology research throughout her undergraduate studies, she also prioritized opportunities to teach and tutor in the sciences. As a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant in Pärnu, Estonia, she will partner with local schools to teach English and foster excitement for using language skills for scientific exploration. She looks forward to strengthening cultural relationships between the US and Estonia and, after her Fulbright year, plans to pursue medical school.

Taylor Briggs, CC’24

Taylor Briggs, a physics major originally from Cambridge, UK and raised in Springfield, IL, will join the Quantum Many Body Systems division at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics in Munich, Germany next year. There, she will conduct research in the field of atomic physics, and looks forward to continuing her research endeavors by pursuing doctoral studies in the same field following her Fulbright fellowship year in Germany.

Adina Cazacu-De Luca, CC’24

Adina, a biochemistry and anthropology double major originally from St. Louis, MO, will conduct research on climate change and health in Spain next year at the Barcelona Institute for Global Health. Following her year in Barcelona, Adina will begin her MD-PhD training at Harvard and, in the long term, will remain dedicated to research focused on environmental health, ultimately aiming to continue to inform and improve pediatric clinical practices.

Lucy Davis, GS’23

Originally from Santa Monica, CA, Lucy studied for two years at Sciences Po in Menton, France, and two years at Columbia as part of the Dual BA program. She majored in comparative literature with French, Arabic, and Italian as focus languages and, throughout her studies, focused on how colonialism and forced migration affect language and culture. In Italy, Lucy looks forward to connecting with her students and local community in her placement city of Barletta, as she helps them build English language skills while she further builds her own intercultural understanding and Italian language skills.

Katey Eickhoff, CC’24

Originally from New Richmond, WI, Katey graduated with a major in neuroscience at Columbia. Here, she also served as a volunteer EMT, enjoyed working as a Biology Lab TA, and conducted clinical research at New York Presbyterian. Next year, she will join the Neurovascular Signaling research group at Aarhus University in Denmark as a Fulbrighter where she will study models of neurovascular uncoupling to improve stroke interventions. Eventually, Katey plans on applying her research experience in Denmark to a career in rural medicine via returning to a rural community like the one she grew up in.

Kay Galarza, CC’24

Kay, a New York City native, majored in political science and sociology at Columbia and, as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant, will spend next year in Barcelona, Spain, where she will be placed at the US Consulate to organize and educationally advise Spanish youth. Throughout her undergraduate studies, Kay maintained a commitment to international advocacy, highlighted by her most recent role at a global philanthropy and venture capital firm specializing in impact investing in emerging markets. In Spain, Kay hopes to continue to build bridges across cultures and, following her Fulbright year, plans to return to her career in impact investment.

Kambi Gathesha, GS’24

Born in Nairobi, Kenya and raised in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and Washington DC, Kambi graduated with a major in history at Columbia. Next year in Kenya, Kambi will undertake an interdisciplinary ethnographic and historical study of the Ngoma competitive dance associations, which emerged along Kenya's coast in the nineteenth century, whereby he is hoping to better understand what performance traditions can reveal about social attitudes, ideas, and the processes through which cultural institutions change. Following his time in Kenya, Kambi plans to pursue a PhD in African history and continue his work as an actor and director, aiming to develop theater and films centered on Africa and the African diaspora.

Emma Glajchen, SEAS’22

Originally from Scarsdale, NY, Emma majored in biomedical engineering. As a Fulbright fellow in Germany, Emma will spend the year in Berlin researching at the intersection of pediatric neurology and immunology. Following her time in Germany, Emma plans to pursue graduate study to continue her research in this field, and hopes that her Fulbright project will continue to inspire her own innovation and research in the future.

Eben Hess, CC’24

As an anthropology major from New York City, Eben looks forward to teaching English in Germany next year, following his many years of volunteering at local elementary schools. Beyond the classroom, Eben is excited to further build his German language skills and for the opportunity to learn more about and compare national cultures across educational systems. Following his time in Germany, Eben plans to attend graduate school and pursue a career in public service.

Clara Amanda Hu, CC’24

Originally from San Francisco, CA, Clara pursued a psychology major and mathematics concentration at Columbia. As a Fulbright fellow, Clara will research the effects of France's assimilation model on the mental health, social relationships, and cultural belonging in refugees and asylum seeking populations of Paris. Her research draws upon her previous work examining France's mental healthcare system, conducted during her study abroad at Columbia's Global Center Reid Hall, as well as her time as a research assistant in the Laboratory of Intergroup Relations and the Social Mind under Dr. Valerie Purdie-Greenaway. Following her year in Paris, Clara plans to pursue law school.

Ashley H Kim, SEAS’24

Originally from Denver, CO, Ashley majored in computer science and complimented her studies with additional coursework in philosophy, computational neuroscience, and cognitive science. Fascinated by the mind and exploring its underlying principles through both mathematical and philosophical rigor, Ashley looks forward to researching at the European Molecular Biology Lab in Heidelberg, Germany, where she will pursue a computational neurogenomics project, which draws from her previous research at the Columbia Bionet and New York Genome Center Technology Innovation Labs.

Joya Kumar, CC’23

Originally from, and currently located in New Delhi, India, Joya majored in history and pursued a special concentration in music at Columbia. She looks forward to teaching English next year in a Bulgarian public high school as a Fulbright fellow, where she is excited to connect with her students, immerse herself in Bulgarian culture, and build Bulgarian language skills. In NYC, Joya particularly enjoyed her engagement with the arts and music communities on and off campus, and eagerly looks forward to finding a local choir or musical group to join.

Jolie L’Heureux, CC’24

Born in Oakland, CA, Jolie grew up between New York, California, and Florida, and pursued a major in astrophysics and a special concentration in mathematics while at Columbia. Through the Fulbright, she will spend next year in Brno, Czech Republic building on research she began at Columbia, in identifying electromagnetic counterparts of gravitational wave events. Beyond the classroom, Jolie was engaged across many campus activities, including working as a teaching assistant and as part of several science outreach initiatives and, both during her time in Brno and upon return to the USA, she plans to continue sharing her passion for physics and astronomy by making science more accessible for all.

Isaac Loomis, CC’24

Isaac was born in Moscow, Idaho and raised in the Wood River Valley. At Columbia, Isaac’s passion for economics, Japanese language and culture, and the intersection of the two was further fostered through his pursuit of an economics - mathematics major. Isaac accelerated his Japanese studies with Middlebury's Language School summer program, a research assistantship, and via studying abroad at Waseda University and, next year in Tokyo, Isaac will research Japan's employee compensation practices with Watanabe Tsutomu's lab in the Graduate School of Economics at the University of Tokyo. Eventually, Isaac plans to pursue a career in academia, where he will continue to pose important questions through data driven methods.

Jasper Ludington, CC’24

Originally from Carrboro, NC, Jasper graduated from Columbia with a major in history. Next year, he will serve as an Fulbright English Teaching Assistant and a basketball coach in Mexico, an opportunity he enthusiastically pursues as part of his continued dedication to a long term career contributing to building positive US - Mexican political relations.

Maya Mitrasinovic, CC’22

Maya, a Brooklyn native and an urban studies major with a specialization in sociology, will teach English next year in Cyprus as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. She is currently an Anchor Production Assistant at MSNBC, where she has sharpened her understanding of both national and international politics, as well as of the role of journalism in global efforts to protect democracy. In Cyprus, Maya looks forward to immersing herself in the culture and politics of southeast Europe and hopes to inspire her students to learn more about journalism and writing. After her year in Cyprus, Maya looks forward to pursuing a career at the intersection of journalism, the law, and human rights.

Habiba Odogba, CC’23

Habiba grew up in Waukesha, WI and graduated with a major in comparative literature and society, and concentration in African American and African Diaspora Studies, with an emphasis on Black Francophone populations, indigeneity, health, and education. While at CU, Habiba researched at Columbia’s Global Center Reid Hall in 2022 and returned to Paris in 2023 as Henry Evans Traveling Fellow to produce an interactive sculpture series. As a Fulbright fellow in Abuja, Nigeria, Habiba will study Ebira weaving, aiming to reaffirm its relevance in healing through a series of blankets that symbolically raise awareness for mental health issues.

Nikhil Patel, CC’24

At Columbia, Nikhil pursued an ancient studies major and public health concentration. Next year, as a Fulbright English teaching assistant in the Slovak Republic, Nikhil will join a Slovak high school, where he will aid students in building their English language skills, learning about American culture, and gaining his own understanding of Slovakian language and culture.

Munirat ‘Muni’ Suleiman, CC’24

From Atlanta, Muni double-majored in sociology and English at Columbia, where she also served as a Co-Editor-in-Chief of Quarto Magazine, Senior Editor at The Blue and White, and as the president of Columbia's Quest Scholars Network, an organization dedicated to supporting fellow first-generation low-income students through mentorship, community building, and education. Fascinated by the intersections of social justice, literary expression, and Black feminism, Muni will spend the next year at the Free University of Berlin where she will conduct research on contemporary transnational Black feminist solidarity efforts between the United States and Germany.

Victor Swezey, CC’24

Originally from Los Angeles, CA, Victor, a comparative literature and society major, will spend the year researching in Georgia as a Fulbright research fellow. In Georgia Victor seeks to explore Georgia’s history as a zone of contention between the West and Russia. In Tbilisi, he plans to locally connect across many communities to collect and develop an oral history which both explores and further fosters Georgia’s ‘culture of remembrance’. Following his research in Georgia, Victor plans to continue his career within journalism.

Tim Vanable, CC’24

A Syracuse, NY native, Tim graduated with a major in American Studies. He has held senior editorships at the Columbia Political Review and the Oxford Review of Books, and also worked as a research assistant in the history department. Tim’s love of music shaped his extracurricular activities. During his junior year, his desire to expand his reading horizons led him to teach himself German, with the goal of teaching English in Germany after graduation. Eventually, Tim seeks to join academia as a professor of political theory. In the meantime, he looks forward to spending next year honing his teaching and German language skills, while learning more about German culture and his local community as an English Teaching Assistant in Eschwege, Germany.

Dennis Zhang, CC’24

At Columbia, Dennis majored in biology and immersed himself in scholarship and service centered around genetics and rare diseases. As a Fulbright researcher in Denmark, Dennis will explore novel gene editing tools at the University of Copenhagen. In tandem, he will lead outreach programs for local Danes on the science and ethics of these technologies, an initiative inspired by courses he designed and taught to underserved high schoolers at the Double Discovery Center. After his fellowship, Dennis plans on becoming a physician-scientist and is excited to apply insights from his time abroad toward advancing a holistic and compassionate future of genetic medicine.

Columbia students and alums interested in learning more about the Fulbright US Student Program and other fellowship programs are encouraged to connect with advisors at Undergraduate Research and Fellowships.