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CWU Recognized as a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Top Producing Institution for 2022-23

Fulbright Scholars Top Producing Institution logo

CWU was named as a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program Top Producing Institution for 2022-23.

Central Washington University added a shiny new honor to its résumé last week when it was named a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program Top Producing Institution for the 2022-23 academic year.

With three CWU faculty members selected to the prestigious program last year, and three others chosen between 2019-21, CWU ranks among the nation’s most decorated institutions for the federal government’s flagship international educational exchange program.

“Our faculty is among the best in the world, and this honor only further validates what we already know about their commitment to excellence,” CWU President Jim Wohlpart said. “The entire CWU community is already extremely proud of the work our esteemed faculty does every day. But for Central to be included in this elite class of higher education institutions gives us even more of a reason to keep improving.”

CWU’s Fulbright U.S. Scholar participants for the current academic year are Provost Michelle DenBeste, Associate Dean of the College of the Sciences Elvin Delgado, and Geological Sciences Professor Susan Kaspari. DenBeste traveled to France in the fall as part of a Fulbright International Education Administrators (IEA) grant; Delgado visited Chile in August and September under a Fulbright Specialist grant, and Kaspari is currently in Norway on a Fulbright Scholar grant that will last until July.

“This is a pretty big deal for CWU to have three Fulbright Teacher Scholars in the same year,” said DenBeste, who visited Paris for 10 days in October. “Having three selections in the same year is amazing, even for a larger institution. This recognition just goes to show that Central is home to some of the most influential scholars in higher education.”

Watch a video featuring this year's Fulbright Scholars from CWU.

DenBeste, Delgado, and Kaspari are among the approximately 900 U.S. scholars—faculty, administrators, or other professionals—chosen to lecture and/or conduct research in a wide variety of academic and professional fields during the 2022-23 academic year.

They were preceded in recent years by Geography Professor John Bowen (Scholar, 2019-20), Sport and Movement Studies Professor Stefan Ward (Scholar, 2020-21), and Associate Professor of Student Engagement and Community Outreach Maureen Rust (Specialist, 2021-25). At least two other CWU faculty members are now working on their Fulbright Scholars applications for 2023-24; selections will be announced this spring.

Fulbright is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program, and it is among the largest and most diverse exchange programs in the world. Since its inception in 1946, more than 400,000 participants from all backgrounds and fields—including recent university graduates, teachers, scientists, researchers, artists, and others, from the U.S. and 160 other countries—have participated in the program.

Around the world, approximately 9,000 merit-based scholarships are awarded each year to accomplished students, scholars, teachers, artists, and professionals from a variety of backgrounds. Fulbrighters study, teach, conduct research, exchange ideas, and contribute to finding solutions to complex global challenges.

The program’s alumni include 41 heads of state or government, 62 Nobel Laureates, 89 Pulitzer Prize winners, 78 MacArthur Fellows, and countless leaders and changemakers who carry forward the Fulbright mission of enhancing mutual understanding.  

The Top Producing Institution recognition is given to the U.S. colleges and universities that received the highest number of applicants selected for the current academic year.

“On behalf of President Biden and Secretary of State Blinken, congratulations to the colleges and universities recognized as 2022-2023 Fulbright Top Producing Institutions, and to all the applicants who were selected for the Fulbright Program this year,” said Lee Satterfield, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs.

“Thanks to the visionary leadership of these institutions, administrators, and advisors, a new generation of Fulbrighters—changemakers, as I like to say—will catalyze lasting impact on their campus, in their communities, and around the world.” 

Read more about the Fulbright Scholars program online.

Media Contact: David Leder, Department of Public Affairs,, 509-963-1518