Contact: LeAnn Adam, OSU National and Global Scholarships Advising Coordinator, [email protected]  

(Corvallis, OR, July 7, 2021) Oregon State University is pleased to announce that one student has been promoted from alternate to finalist status, bringing the total number of finalists up to three for the 2021-2022 Fulbright U.S. Student Program by the U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. Four additional OSU students are currently alternates, awaiting further notification.

The student that was recently promoted to a 2021-2022 Fulbright Scholar is Ellen McPherson. Ellen is a recently graduated senior who earned a bachelor’s degree in German and Environmental Science Education. During her Fulbright grant, Ellen will teach English in an elementary or secondary school in Germany. Ellen plans to engage her students by promoting environmental activism and teaching about global ecosystems. She is most looking forward to exploring ecosystems in Thüringen and learning more about environmental values and policies in Germany as well as gaining classroom experience. She also plans to join a local environmental organization to meet community members who share her interest in sustainability in order to exchange perspectives on environmental issues. After completing the ETA, Ellen plans to attend graduate school and to continue to intertwine her interests in German and Environmental Sciences. She hopes to help students and community members become informed about the actions they can take to protect local ecosystems. When asked what advice she would give to future Fulbright applicants, Ellen shares, “Start early and don't doubt yourself. The Fulbright application is intimidating, but you can do it! The application process itself is so rewarding and a great way to learn about yourself, your past accomplishments, and future goals.”

Two OSU students were named 2021-2022 Fulbright Scholars earlier this spring: 

Maja Engler is a graduating senior earning an Honors bachelor of science in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology with a minor in Chemistry. In collaboration with Ulm University, Germany, Maja will research winter polymorphism in hibernating Djungarian hamsters, to better understand potential biomedical applications for humans. She will also coach local youth soccer teams to promote cultural integration and to build international relationships. Upon her return to the United States, Maja plans to begin her graduate studies in biochemistry at the University of Nebraska Lincoln in order to continue performing the hibernation research for organ preservation that sparked her interest in biomedical research.

Emily Newton graduated in 2012 with an Honors bachelor of science in Marine Biology and a minor in Chemistry. Next year, Emily will carry out Msc research in New Zealand on the possibility of two species of kelp-rafting marine invertebrates establishing in warming, nearshore Antarctic ecosystems. This Fulbright project will be undertaken in collaboration with the University of Otago. Following her Fulbright grant, Emily plans to remain in New Zealand to finish her PhD in marine science at the University of Otago before returning to the United States to pursue postdoctoral work at the University of Washington, with the ultimate goal of forming an international research group focused on interdisciplinary approaches to Antarctic marine research and conservation. 

These students are among over 2,100 U.S. citizens who will study, conduct research, and teach abroad for the academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected in an open, merit-based competition that considers leadership potential, academic and/or professional achievement, and record of service.  As Fulbright alumni, their careers are enriched by joining a network of thousands of esteemed scholars, many of whom are leaders in their fields. Fulbright alumni include 60 Nobel Prize laureates, 88 Pulitzer Prize recipients, and 37 who have served as a head of state or government.

Current alternates for the 2021-2022 Fulbright include: 

Jacqueline Delie graduated in 2020 with a master of science in Wildlife Management. She proposes a research project in collaboration with Makerere University in Uganda to study participatory conservation governance in relation to communities neighboring Queen Elizabeth National Park. This project aims to inform the Uganda Wildlife Authority’s Strategic Plan policies by taking into account both biodiversity conservation and community livelihood development considerations. 

Conner (Sage) Fox graduated in 2020 with an Honors bachelor of science in Fisheries and Wildlife and a minor in Spanish. He proposes a research project in collaboration with the University of Concepción in Chile to study the distribution and impacts of introduced salmon populations on native fish diversity in northern Patagonia. 

Gabriela (Gabi) Garza is a graduating senior earning a bachelor of science in Bioengineering. In collaboration with the University of Vienna in Austria, Gabi proposes a research project to study the role that the bacterium Klebsiella has as an early indicator of intestinal disease in premature infants. She hopes to engage in this research as she prepares for a future as a physician-scientist. 

Saki Nakai is a graduating senior earning an Honors bachelor of arts in Psychology with minors in French, Music Performance, and Mathematics. Saki proposes a research project in collaboration with the University of Luxembourg, to explore identity construal in American and Japanese expatriates in the multicultural country. 

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to forge lasting connections between the people of the United States and the people of other countries, counter misunderstandings, and help people and nations work together toward common goals. Since its establishment in 1946, the Fulbright Program has enabled more than 390,000 dedicated and accomplished students, scholars, artists, teachers, and professionals of all backgrounds to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas, and find solutions to shared international concerns. The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the Program, which operates in more than 160 countries worldwide. For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State, please visit or contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Press Office by telephone 202-632-6452 or e-mail [email protected].

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program is administered at Oregon State University through LeAnn Adam, OSU National and Global Scholarships Advising Coordinator. For more information about applying for Fulbright or other national and international scholarships and fellowships, please contact  LeAnn at [email protected] and visit: