Alumni Profiles

Professor Valerie M. Hudson, PhD Distinguished Chair

Home InstitutionProfessor and George H.W. Bush Chair at The George H.W. Bush School of Government and Public Service, Texas A&M University
Host InstitutionCoral Bell School of Asia-Pacific Affairs, Australian National University
Award NameFulbright Distinguished Chair in Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (Sponsored by ANU)
DisciplineInternational Affairs in Foreign Policy, Women, Peace and Security
Award Year2016

Valerie M. Hudson is Professor and George H.W. Bush Chair in The George H.W. Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University, where she directs the Program on Women, Peace, and Security. An expert on international security and foreign policy analysis, Dr. Valerie M. Hudson received her PhD in political science at The Ohio State University and came to Texas A&M University from a senior faculty position at Brigham Young University. In 2009, Foreign Policy named her one of the top 100 Most Influential Global Thinkers. Her co-authored book, Bare Branches: Security Implications of Asia’s Surplus Male Population, and the research it presents, received major attention from the media with coverage in theWall Street Journal,New York Times,Financial Times, Washington Post,BBC,CNN, and numerous other outlets. The book also received two national book awards. Her co-authored bookSex and World Peace, published by Columbia University Press, was named by Gloria Steinem as one of the top three books on her reading list. Her most recent book, with Patricia Leidl, isThe Hillary Doctrine: Sex and American Foreign Policy, published in June 2015. Hudson was also recently named a Distinguished Scholar of Foreign Policy Analysis by the International Studies Association.

Dr. Hudson has developed a nation-by-nation database on women ( that triggered both academic and policy interest (the latter includes its use by both the US Senate Foreign Relations Committee and various agencies of the United Nations). Using this data, Hudson and her co-principal investigators from The WomanStats Project have published a wide variety of empirical work linking the security of women to the security of states, with research appearing in International Security, the American Political Science Review, the Journal of Peace Research, Political Psychology, and Politics and Gender.

Throughout her career, Dr. Hudson has demonstrated a strong commitment to collaboration with other scholars both in her own field and in other disciplines, and received significant research grants, including grants from the US Department of Defense’s Minerva Initiative and the National Science Foundation, to support her work in international affairs. Her research and teaching experience is also complemented by three major teaching awards and numerous research awards, and she has recently been awarded an Andrew Carnegie Fellowship. Hudson served as vice president of the International Studies Association for 2011-2012. She is a founding editorial board member of Foreign Policy Analysis, and also serves on the editorial boards of Politics and Gender and The American Political Science Review.

Dr. Hudson hopes to spend her time in Australia researching the implementation of UNSCR 1325 by the Australian government and military through its National Action Plan on Women, Peace, and Security, as well as developing a more in-depth understanding of the field of Foreign Policy Analysis as it has evolved in Australia. She is looking forward to meeting scholars throughout Australia that have similar interests. Her family will accompany her, and they are keen to see and learn as much about “Oz” as possible.

Dr Todd Oliynyk Senior Scholars

Home InstitutionMonash University
Host InstitutionMathematics Department, Princeton University
Award NameFulbright Senior Scholarship
DisciplineMathematical Sciences
Award Year2017

Todd is an Associate Professor in the School of Mathematical Sciences at Monash University.

The main aim of Todd’s Fulbright project, Gravitating relativistic fluid bodies: a mathematical analysis, is to develop a rigorous mathematical foundation for gravitating relativistic material bodies that is applicable to astrophysical systems. This project will significantly improve current understanding of how matter and gravitational fields behave near the matter-vacuum boundary of physical bodies and provide important guidance for constructing stable numerical schemes to numerically model systems of gravitating relativistic fluid bodies. During his time at Princeton University, Todd will work with leading researchers in the field of Mathematical Relativity and will participate in the activities of the Focussed Research Group in Mathematical General Relativity hosted by the Mathematics Department. He will also visit the University of Michigan and Johns Hopkins University to collaborate with researchers on aspects of his project.

Fergus Hanson Professional Scholars

Home InstitutionUniversity of Sydney
Host InstitutionGeorgetown University, Washington
Award Name2011 Fulbright Anniversary Alliance Scholarship sponsored by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade
Award Year2011

“While Australia and the United States have very close diplomatic ties, when it comes to recent innovations in diplomacy there is great untapped potential for exchange and opportunity to further broaden the alliance relationship.”

Fergus Hanson, Director of Polling and Research Fellow at the Lowy Institute for International Policy in Sydney will have the opportunity to spend three months at Georgetown University in Washington through the Anniversary Alliance Scholarship sponsored by the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT). DFAT sponsored a second scholarship for 2011 as part of the celebrations for the 60th Anniversary of the Fulbright Program.

His project aims to make a practical contribution to alliance cooperation by examining the broad range of innovations the State Department has been adopting in the area of 21st century statecraft, including digital diplomacy, and assessing which of these could be applied in Australia. A second focus will be on the State Department’s use of opinion polling to inform foreign policy making – where it is also a world leader – and looking at how DFAT could learn from this experience. “These innovations greatly extend reach at limited additional cost and, in the case of polling, allow better targeting of scarce resources,” Fergus said.

“This project would provide DFAT with an in-depth analysis of this ‘creative diplomacy’ as practised by one of the world’s leading diplomatic services. It would broaden the depth of understanding of which factors are fostering this innovation, which programs have been most effective and in which areas, and will allow for a more informed decision about those that might work best in an Australian context. Most importantly it will encourage further deepening of diplomatic cooperation and strengthening of the ANZUS alliance.”

Fergus has a BA in Philosophy and a Masters in International Law from the University of Sydney. In addition to his qualifications he has represented Australia in the Netherlands as a diplomat, been awarded a Vasey Fellowship from CSIS Pacific Forum (November-February 2010-11), held a Visiting Fellowship at the Lauterpacht Research Centre for International Law, University of Cambridge (May-July 2003), been awarded a full Swiss government scholarship to undertake postgraduate studies in Switzerland (2003-04) and has published extensively.

His non-academic interests include surfing (badly), snowboarding, carpentry, trekking and reading. The prestigious Fulbright program is the largest educational scholarship of its kind, created by U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright and the U.S. Government in 1946. Aimed at promoting mutual understanding through educational exchange, it operates between the U.S. and 155 countries. In Australia, the scholarships are funded by the Australian and U.S. Governments and corporate partners and administered by the Australian-American Fulbright Commission in Canberra. Fergus is one of 26 talented Australians to be recognised as a Fulbright Scholar in 2011.

Professor Peter Hudson Professional Scholars

Home InstitutionSt Vincent’s Hospital and The University of Melbourne
Host InstitutionCentre to Advance Palliative Care, New York USA
Award NameFulbright Professional Scholarship
DisciplinePublic Health
Award Year2016

Peter is the Director of the Centre for Palliative Care which is a statewide academic unit based at St Vincent’s Hospital and a Collaborative Centre of The University of Melbourne, Australia. He holds an honorary professorial position at The University of Melbourne and is Professor of Palliative Care at Queen’s University, UK.  Peter’s role at the Centre for Palliative Care is to oversee education initiatives and the development of research programs incorporating palliative care service delivery, psychosocial support and symptom management. The focus of Peter’s role at Queen’s University (UK) is to assist the University with its palliative care research strategy, supervise higher degree students and conduct collaborative international research projects. Peter is a registered nurse with more than twenty-five years experience in palliative care practice, education and research.  He is Vice President of Palliative Care Australia and was a Director of the Board of The International Association for Hospice and Palliative Care. Peter is the Chair of the European Association for Palliative Care’s International Palliative Care Family Caregiver Research Collaboration and he is an international expert advisor to the All Ireland Institute of Hospice and Palliative Care. He has authored numerous international journal publications and has attracted over 10 million dollars in research grant income, including from the National Health and Medical Research Council. Peter is a past recipient of the Premier’s Award for translating evidence into practice.

The World Health Organization advocates that palliative care should improve the quality of life of patients with advanced disease and their family caregivers. However, the provision of support for family caregivers is typically suboptimal resulting in wider negative implications for society. The purpose of Peter’s Fulbright scholarship is to develop a comprehensive strategy to systematically improve support for family caregivers of palliative care patients. This will be achieved by working with Dr Diane Meier, the Director of the USA Center to Advance Palliative Care based in New York. Peter will also collaborate with and visit other key USA stakeholders and universities. It is envisaged that the outcomes of Peter’s Fulbright scholarship will be mutually beneficial for the provision of palliative care in the USA and Australia (and potentially more broadly).

Captain Zach Lambert Professional Scholars

Home InstitutionHeadquarters 1st Division / Deployable Joint Force Headquarters, Australian Army.
Host InstitutionAmerican, British, Canadian Australian and New Zealand Armies’ Program
Award NameFulbright Professional Scholarship in Australian-U.S. Alliance Studies Funded by DFAT
DisciplineMobilisation and Defence Industry
Award Year2019

Captain Lambert is an active duty Army officer who recently served on the divisional staff and is now instructing at the Australian Defence Force Academy. He has significant regimental and operational experience, primarily within the Pacific region, and holds several degrees from the University of New South Wales in Canberra.

Captain Lambert will use his Fulbright professional scholarship in United States – Australian Alliance Studies to conduct research with a variety of governmental and industry partners. This research will explore the challenges and impacts of competition versus cooperation within the allied context on an Australian mobilisation effort. It will enable better use of Australian defence industry investment and strengthen the longstanding alliance ties between the United States and Australia.

Carly Rosewarne Professional Scholars

Home InstitutionCSIRO
Host InstitutionUnited States Government, Department of Energy – Joint Genome Institute
Award NameProfessional Scholarship in Climate Change and Clean Energy (Sponsored by the Australian and United States Governments)
DisciplineBiological Sciences (Microbial Ecology)
Award Year2014

“Technologies to mitigate methane emissions from anthropogenic sources have the potential to significantly reduce the rate of climate change.”

Carly Rosewarne is a Research Scientist from CSIRO Animal, Food and Health Sciences and the Sustainable Agriculture Flagship. Her research is focused on reducing methane emissions from livestock. She will study at the United States Government Department of Energy Joint Genome Institute in California during 2015. Her project will focus on using sequencing technologies to study the genetics of methane producing microbes, commonly known as methanogens.

“Technologies to mitigate methane emissions from anthropogenic sources have the potential to significantly reduce the rate of climate change. Methane production is also under increasing scrutiny for use as an alternative energy source. My scholarship contributes to this field by allowing me to analyse genomes of methanogens that are underrepresented in current studies. By understanding how methanogens are able to survive and proliferate, we can develop targeted strategies to control their growth.”

Dr Felicity McCormack Postdoctoral Scholars

Felicity Graham
Home InstitutionInstitute for Marine & Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania
Host InstitutionDepartment of Earth System Science, University of California, Irvine
Award NameFulbright Tasmania Scholarship
DisciplineAntarctic Science
Award Year2018

Felicity is a postdoctoral researcher in the Australian Research Council Special Research Initiative Antarctic Gateway Partnership at the Institute for Marine and Antarctic Studies, University of Tasmania. Her research focusses on the physical processes that govern Antarctic ice flow. Antarctica contains enough ice to raise global mean sea levels by approximately 60m. However, the response of the Antarctic ice sheet to climate change, and its potential contribution to sea level rise, is highly uncertain.

Felicity will use the Fulbright Postdoctoral Scholarship to work with researchers at the University of California, Irvine. She will investigate the potential timing and magnitude of ice loss from East Antarctic glaciers due to warming oceanic and atmospheric temperatures. The findings will inform sea level rise estimates for the coming century.

Dr Prasanga Samarasinghe Postdoctoral Scholars

Home InstitutionAustralian National University
Host InstitutionUniversity of Maryland
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation
DisciplineAudio and Acoustic Signal Processing
Award Year2019

Prasanga is a Future Engineering Research Leadership Fellow (FERL) in the Audio and Acoustic Signal Processing group at the Research School of Engineering, Australian National University. Much of Prasanga’s research work focuses on spatial audio, room acoustics, microphone and loudspeaker arrays, and noise cancellation.

During her Fulbright Scholarship, Prasanga will focus on room acoustic modelling, which is essential knowledge for a range of audio applications including virtual and augmented reality technologies, surround sound entertainment, and listening aids for the hearing impaired. Together with the PIRL Laboratory at University of Maryland, College Park, she will work towards developing a data-driven approach to model the room response between directional transducers or simply any acoustic environment of interest.  The project anticipates to result in commercial outcomes taking a step forward in enhancing the way we consume audio.

Victoria Austin Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionLab of Animal Ecology, Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, Western Sydney University
Host InstitutionCornell Lab of Ornithology, Mike Webster Lab, Cornell University
Award NameFulbright Postgraduate Scholarship (funded by Western Sydney University)
DisciplineBehavioural Ecology
Award Year2019

Victoria is a PhD candidate researching the structure and function of female superb lyrebird vocalisations at the Lab of Animal Ecology at the Hawkesbury Institute for the Environment, Western Sydney University. For her Fulbright Scholarship, Victoria will learn cutting edge song analysis techniques with Professor Mike Webster at Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Female song is widespread in song birds, but there is limited understanding of its function both independently and in relation to males. Hypotheses proposed in recent research have yet to be empirically tested and field-based studies are urgently needed. Using a comprehensive field-based study of female superb lyrebirds accompanied with detailed acoustic analysis, Victoria aims to identify sex-specific ecological and social drivers of elaborate female vocalisations, and account for variation in song within and between females. Her research will contribute to the understanding of both the evolution of bird song and the behavioural ecology of this iconic Australian species.

Turner Block Postgraduate Students

Turner Block
Home InstitutionCollege of Arts and Sciences, Fordham University
Host InstitutionSchool of Human Movement and Nutrition Sciences, The University of Queensland
Award NameFulbright Postgraduate Scholarship
DisciplineSport Psychology
Award Year2017

Turner earned her BS in psychology at Fordham University located in Bronx, New York in 2017. She spent her four years at Fordham as a member of the women’s soccer team and was named Captain for her senior season. Off the field, she was a research assistant on numerous studies for the Department of Psychology. Additionally, she completed her Honors Thesis on athlete pre-screening mental health measures and their perceptions of the mental health services offered.

Turner will continue her research while at the School of Human Movement Studies at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. Her specific focus will be the athletic identity formation of Paralympic swimmers with cerebral palsy as they complete a performance-focused training program. She looks forward to learning more about how this information may be beneficial to an athlete’s performance, and plans to bring these insights back to the U.S.

Jonathan Gelber Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionPomona College
Host InstitutionUNSW and Sydney Institute of Marine Science
Award Name2011 Fulbright Postgraduate Scholar
DisciplineBiology, Molecular Biolody
Award Year2011

“Cholera infects millions of people each year so learning more about this bacterium is critical to improving public health.”

Mr Jonathan Gelber, an Emergency Medical Technician with the Aspen Valley Hospital, has won a Fulbright Postgraduate Scholarship to spend a year at the University of New South Wales and the Sydney Institute of Marine Sciences to research the bacterium Vibrio cholerae (Vc), which causes the deadly illness, cholera.

In particular, Jonathan will research biofilms of Vc. Biofilms are aggregate formations of numerous bacteria, and recently the occurrence of cholera epidemics has been linked to the presence of Vc biofilms.

“Biofilms are important with regards to medicine and public health, as they constitute a refuge for numerous pathogenic bacteria. Biofilms allow bacteria to survive both environmental predation and human immune defense,” Jonathan said.

“Vc can exist as either a pathogenic free-living bacteria, or an even more virulent colony-like biofilm,” Jonathan said. “Though biofilms are abundant in marine habitats, relatively little work has been done to investigate their lifecycles and mechanisms of defense.”

The laboratories at UNSW and SIMS are among the world’s leading centres for biofilm research and Jonathan will work with Dr. Diane McDougald of UNSW and SIMS. SIMS
is one of the few institutions worldwide that has a PC2 aquarium, which Jonathan will use to study the factors that drive the Vc biofilm’s virulence and its resistance to immune systems. Results from his project may be used to predict and even prevent future cholera outbreaks.

Jonathan has a BA in Biology, Summa Cum Laude, from Pomona College in Southern California. He has been awarded various awards and prizes including a Phi Beta Kappa Award, a Sigma Xi Science Research Society award, and the Michael Rosen Outstanding Pre-medical Student Award. In addition to his academic work, Jonathan is a keen musician and has performed drums, guitar, and saxophone in a range of bands. He also volunteers at hospitals and plans to play music and assist in hospitals while in Sydney.

Athina Manakas Postgraduate Students

Home InstitutionBiochemistry, Cellular and Molecular Biology Cluster, School of Life and Environmental Sciences, The University of Sydney
Host InstitutionDepartment of Immunology and Microbiology, The Scripps Research Institute, Florida
Award NameFulbright Future Scholarship Funded by The Kinghorn Foundation
Award Year2019

Athina is a PhD candidate at the University of Sydney. Her research involves antibody engineering to develop novel reagents to recruit a patient’s own immune system to specifically target and kill cancer cells.

A Fulbright Future Scholarship will allow Athina to work with Associate Professor Christoph Rader at the Scripps Research Institute to develop these novel engineered antibody derivatives against Chronic Lymphocytic Leukemia (CLL). Athina’s project will involve the design and development of antibody derivatives to target CLL cells, and to test their ability to specifically kill cancerous cells. Through her Fulbright Scholarship, Athina will establish a collaboration between The Scripps Research Institute and The University of Sydney for the development of novel immunotherapeutics for cancer therapy. Athina will bring this expertise in antibody engineering and development back to her laboratory in Sydney.

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