U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Office of the Spokesman
January 23, 2004
2004 IRAQI FULBRIGHTERS CHOSEN
The first group of Fulbright grantees to come to the United States from Iraq in
14 years has been selected. This group of Iraqi Fulbright grantees, including 23
students and 2 scholars, will come to the United States to study in Masters
programs or conduct research, arriving in February of 2004. The Fulbright grants
are being awarded in the following
areas: Public Health, Public Administration, Business, Journalism, Law, and
English teaching, among others. The Fulbrighters were selected from an applicant
pool of nearly 400 candidates who met Fulbright standards. Two independent,
bi-national committees in Iraq reviewed the applications and nominated the
finalists who were selected by the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship
Ambassador L. Paul Bremer and Deputy Secretary of State Richard Armitage
announced the reestablishment of the Fulbright program in Iraq in October. In
addition to this initial group of Fulbrighters, plans have been announced to
bring Iraqis to the United States under the Fulbright American Studies
Institutes Program and the Foreign Language Teaching Assistant Program, one of
the components of the Fulbright Student program.
"America is making good on its promise of opening the doors to higher education
for all people of Iraq." Ambassador Bremer stated. "The real value of the
Fulbright program will begin when the participants return to Iraq and share both
the academic knowledge and the practical experience they have gained during
their time in the United States."
Dr. Zaied Abdel Razzak Mohammed Aswad, the Iraqi Minister of Higher Education,
stated, "The Fulbright programs are a great step forward in improving Iraq's
education system. These scholarships will strengthen the bilateral relations
between our two nations in the area of education. We thank the Americans for
their assistance in this vital domain of human endeavors."
Patricia Harrison, the Assistant Secretary for the Department of State's Bureau
of Educational and Cultural Affairs, stated, "This initiative is representative
of America's long-term commitment to Iraq through exchange programs. Our two
nations worked together to make music with the December visit to the United
States of the Iraq National Symphony Orchestra. Today we are renewing our work
together in academic fields."
Since its inception in 1946, 255,000 individuals have participated in the
Fulbright program, with 96,400 from the United States and 158,600 from other
countries. Fulbright alumni include Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners, governors
and members of Congress, ambassadors and artists, prime ministers and heads of
state, university faculty, scientists, CEOs and Supreme Court justices.