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Hilary King '05 Awarded Fulbright Grant to United Kingdom

Posted May 2, 2008
Tags 2005 Fulbright Grant
Hilary King '05 has been awarded a Fulbright Grant to the United Kingdom. She will undertake a year of graduate study in the anthropology of development and social transformation at the University of Sussex in order to learn how anthropological theory can best inform economic initiatives. Ginny Dosch, Hamilton's Student Fellowships Coordinator, says the United Kingdom is the most competitive country for Fulbrights, with 465 applications for 12 awards.

King, who majored in Spanish at Hamilton, was a Thomas A. Watson Travel Fellow for 2005-06. She designed and conducted a year of independent study on cooperative organization among coffee farmers in Nicaragua, Guatemala, Tanzania, Rwanda and Ethiopia.

From 2004-2007 King was employed as operational director with the non-profit organization Lifeworks International. In that position she directed programs seeking to foster international understanding through high school service-learning programs.

In her Fulbright proposal King wrote: "I require training in anthropology to understand communities with varied and particular social structures in order to advance relevant, sensitive and effective economic development initiatives. I plan to work on economic development in an applied context. Anthropology is the lens through which economic initiatives need to be evaluated and implemented in order to function successfully.
I seek tools to facilitate economic advancements and to comprehend what makes development projects, organizations, and initiatives successful, and an awareness of particular pitfalls that thwart groups with good intentions.

"Economic development is fostered through many distinct avenues. In a globalized world, the same economic blights and advancements affect people across varied boundaries: national, racial, socio-economic, and cultural. Individuals are connected across all of these boundaries. They are forced to confront their differences in their trade relationships."

When she returns to the U.S., King hopes to design and implement relevant community development initiatives as an advisor for governments, corporations, and development organizations. She is particularly interested in projects involving agriculture, community participation, and rural economies.

The purpose of the Fulbright Program is to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and other countries through the exchange of persons, knowledge and skills. The program is designed to give recent college graduates opportunities for personal development and international experience.

It offers invaluable opportunities to meet and work with people of the host country, sharing daily life as well as professional and creative insights. The program promotes cross-cultural interaction and mutual understanding on a person-to-person basis in an atmosphere of openness, academic integrity and intellectual freedom. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by Congress to the Department of State. The U.S. Student Program awards approximately 900 grants annually and currently operates in more than 140 countries worldwide.

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