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Three GS Honors College seniors named Fulbright U.S. Student Program semifinalists

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program has selected three Georgia Southern University Honors College seniors as semifinalists for 2024-2025.
Photo courtesy of The Fulbright Program.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program has selected three Georgia Southern University Honors College seniors as semifinalists for 2024-2025. Being chosen as a semifinalist is a significant step in the Fulbright competition as these three students were chosen by Fulbright’s national screening committees. Their applications have moved on to their respective host countries’ selection committees for final selection. 

The three Georgia Southern semifinalists are:

James Landers
History ’24
Semifinalist for the English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Program in Taiwan
James Landers is currently working on his honors thesis, “Unilateralism and Strategic Ambiguity in American Foreign Policy: The Taiwan Relations Act in Context” with Mao Lin, Ph.D., Department of History. Landers’ research fueled his desire to travel to Taiwan and apply for this opportunity. If he is awarded the ETA, his main goal for the year is “to increase my proficiency in Mandarin so that upon my return to the United States I can jump right into my graduate research on the United States’ relationship with Taiwan and China.”

Rylee Stanton
International Studies and World Languages & Cultures – Spanish ’24
Semifinalist for the English Teaching Assistant (ETA) Program in Colombia
Rylee Stanton studied abroad in Colombia in the summer of 2022, and is eager to return. “My time teaching will be spent creating powerful educational experiences for students and building a community of lifelong learners and global citizens,” she said. Stanton is currently working on her honors thesis, “The Edge of Paradise: Consumer Experiences with Sustainable Development” with William Biebuyck, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and International Studies. Stanton hopes to continue to explore this topic further if she is awarded the Fulbright.

Lilly Thompson
International Studies ’24
Semifinalist for Study/Research Grant to Latvia
Lilly Thompson has been working on her thesis, “Examining Populist Political Parties in the Baltic States and Slovenia” with Jacek Lubeccki, Ph.D., Department of Political Science and International Studies, and she hopes to continue to research the Baltic States in graduate school. Thompson applied for a study grant to earn a master’s degree in international governance and diplomacy in Latvia. She is interested in pursuing research on transitional justice. “The legacy of transitional justice still informs Latvia’s governance and foreign policy today, especially regarding the treatment of ethnic minorities and support for other victims of gross human rights violations, such as in Ukraine,” she said.

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program expands perspectives through academic and professional advancement and cross-cultural dialogue. Fulbright creates connections in a complex and changing world. In partnership with more than 140 countries worldwide, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers unparalleled opportunities in all academic disciplines to passionate and accomplished graduating college seniors, graduate students and young professionals from all backgrounds. Program participants pursue graduate study, conduct research or teach English abroad.

During their grants, Fulbrighters will meet, work, live with and learn from the people of the host country, sharing daily experiences. The program facilitates cultural exchange through direct interaction on an individual basis in the classroom, field, home and in routine tasks, allowing the grantee to gain an appreciation of others’ viewpoints and beliefs, the way they do things and the way they think. Through engagement in the community, individuals will interact with their hosts on a one-to-one basis in an atmosphere of openness, academic integrity and intellectual freedom, thereby promoting mutual understanding.

The Honors College at Georgia Southern is an inclusive community of scholars that fosters intellectual and professional development through undergraduate research and creative scholarship, experiential learning, global engagement and personalized mentorship.