Fischlowitz Travel Fellowship

The Fischlowitz Travel Fellowship provides an opportunity for Grinnell College international students to pursue casual yet purposeful independent travel in the United States, focused on deep exploration of a chosen theme. One award of $5,400 is available each year, made possible through the generous support of Teresa and Merle Fischlowitz ’53.

Fischlowitz remembers his friendships with students from abroad as one of the most rewarding aspects of his time at Grinnell. He believes traveling independently in the United States has the power to enrich an international student’s education, beyond what can be accomplished by living for a few years in any single community. This award was established to provide opportunities for meaningful travel to students who might not otherwise be able to pursue it during their time at Grinnell.

Learn more about how to apply for this exciting opportunity below or contact OISA.

“The Fischlowitz Travel Fellowship enabled me to combine my dual passions of theatre and international human rights in a uniquely exploratory manner, giving me the impetus required to pursue both my interests to the fullest extent possible personally and professionally in the future.”

Mithila Iyer ’19 (India)

Application Process for Fischlowitz Travel Fellowship

Find information about the application process and selection criteria on our Fischlowitz Travel Fellowship GrinnellShare page (log-in required).



Qiongyue (Olivia) Wang ’25 (China) is this year’s Fischlowitz Travel Fellowship recipient. As an avid surfer, Olivia will explore the unique dimensions of surfing culture across the U.S. She will travel to California, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Texas, Louisiana, and Florida to experience the variations in culture (music, lifestyle choices, fashion, art, histories) and geographic environment from state to state.


Ekta Shaikh ’24 (Pakistan) followed her passion for museum studies by exploring how South Asian history is remembered, explored, viewed, visualized, and created in U.S. museums. She will visit different collections and contemporary exhibits in California, Massachusetts, New York, and Illinois to talk with curators and “listen for muted sounds” — underrepresented, overshadowed, or misunderstood histories, artworks, and narratives. 


Jivyaa Vaidya ’23 (India) sought to uncover connections and culture in the U.S. through street art, inspired by murals in her hometown of Indore, India. She traveled to Ohio, Maryland, Georgia, Louisiana, Nevada, Hawaii, and Washington, D.C., to engage in conversations with artists and the general public about art in their communities.


Diana Chege ’22 (Kenya) visited different Black women and their kitchens to explore Black women’s experiences in the U.S. in order to understand what it means to be a Black woman in America. Inspired by courses she has taken in Grinnell and her experiences with her mother in their home kitchen, Diana will visit historic, corporate, and communal kitchens to interview and learn more about how Black women view their work in these personal or corporate spaces, and what these stories reflect about American food culture as a whole.


Antonella Diaz ’23 (Ecuador) befriended strangers by requesting to take their portraits and asking for their stories with questions like, What does it mean to be American? Her travels took her to New Orleans, Nashville, New York City, and Los Angeles on a journey to form meaningful human connections by embracing the fear of befriending strangers and asking for their unique perspectives.


Tommy O’Donnell (UK) “Food Sovereignty in the United States” Tommy used this opportunity to explore food sovereignty in the U.S., and how different communities across the country have tackled the challenge of food sovereignty and continue to do so. His travels took him to New York, Massachusetts, Kansas, Louisiana, California, and Washington.


Mithila Iyer ’19 (India) “Minority Theatre Culture in the United States” Mithila explored American identity through the artistic expressions of marginalized people, braiding together her dual passions for theatre and human rights. Her travels took her to California, Texas, New York, and Washington, D.C.


Michaela Gelnarova ’18 (Czech Republic) “Extreme Sports in America” On her solo journey through New York, California, and Hawaii, Misha explored the adrenaline-fueled culture of extreme sports in the U.S.


Aleksandar Hrusanov ’18 (Bulgaria) “Music in American Culture” Aleksandar used this opportunity to explore cities that have been important sites in U.S. music history: Seattle and grunge, Memphis/Nashville and country, New Orleans and blues/jazz, and Los Angeles as the home of one of his personal musical heroes.


Xiaoxuan Yang ’17 (China) “Sustainability Lessons in U.S. Landscapes” Xiaoxuan’s theme of sustainability led her on a journey into vulnerable ecosystems. She also took a closer look into how cities, organizations, and higher education institutions across the U.S. are implementing greener practices.


Bo Wang ’16 (China) “College Sports in America” Bo explored the world of college sports in the U.S. by traveling to California, Texas, and Louisiana. Bo will continue her travels over winter break.


Frank Zhu ’15 (China) “Backpacking and Photography On the East Coast” Frank set out on a photographic journaling adventure by traveling to Massachusetts, New York, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Washington D.C.


Zhanni Gao ’14 (Singapore) “Architectures of the U.S.” Zhanni explored architecture in various regions of the U.S., considering their historical context as well as their relationship to people by traveling to Washington D.C., Massachusetts, Virginia, and California.


Jose David Achio Mendez ’13 (Costa Rica) “From Thirteen Colonies to World Power” David explored historic colonies and government centers in Virginia, North Carolina, Washington D.C., Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts.


Radka Slamova ’13 (Czech Republic) “Hiking and Photography in U.S. National Parks” Radka explored the natural wonders of the U.S. by traveling to Utah, Wyoming, California, Oregon, Washington, Montana, and Illinois.

Chandara Veung ’12 (Cambodia) “Modernity and Antiquity, Science and the Arts: An Exploration” Chandara visited skyscrapers and science and art museums to learn more about the U.S. and its relations with Asia and Cambodia in particular by traveling to Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, Washington D.C., Florida, Texas, and California.


Wadzanai Motsi ’12 (Zimbabwe) “Evolution of Gospel Music in the U.S./Rediscovering Gospel Music” Wadzanai retraced the history of gospel music in the U.S. by traveling to Connecticut, New York, Georgia, California, Louisiana, and Tennessee.

Gizeh Becerra Becerra ’10 (Mexico) “Vestiges of the Wild” Gizeh explored national parks to learn about environmental conservation by traveling to Virginia and New York.


Hai Tran ’09 (Vietnam) “American National Parks and Entertainment” Hai investigated national parks and entertainment venues in Illinois, Indiana, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Georgia, Colorado, Utah, California, Oregon, and Washington.

Karuna Giri ’10 (Nepal) followed a path centered on the theme of “water” including whale watching in Washington, Nevada, Arizona, Florida, New York, and Illinois.


Saugar Sainju ’08 (Nepal) “Observing the Influence of Science and Technology on American Culture” Saugar traveled to Nevada, California, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, New York, and Massachusetts.

Eleni Tsivitzi ’08 (Greece) “Frank Gehry designed structures” Eleni traveled to Illinois, Massachusetts, New York, and California.


Andriana Nikolova ’07 (Bulgaria) “Hike and Bike America” Andriana traveled to Florida, Washington, Oregon, California, and Arizona.

Luzat Khandkar ’07 (Bangladesh) “Exploring Popular Ethnic Food Culture in the U.S.” Luzat traveled to Nevada, Washington, California, Arizona, New Mexico, Florida, and New York.

Trymore Magomana ’07 (Zimbabwe) “The ABCs of America” Trymore traveled to Missouri, Tennessee, Alabama, Louisiana, Florida, South Carolina, Washington D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Illinois.


Jiazhen Chen,’07 (China) “Presidential Trip Around America” Jiazhen traveled to Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Washington D.C., Virginia, Georgia, Louisiana, Texas, Nevada, and California.

Ingrid Selechnik ’06 (Guatemala) “Searching for and Seeing Jewish Life in the U.S.” Ingrid traveled to Nevada, Arizona, California, Oregon, Washington, New York, Connecticut, and Massachusetts.


Yuliya Hedynach ’05 (Ukraine) Yuliya traveled to New York, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Washington D.C., North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Louisiana, and California.

Ekaterina Pekarskaya ’05 (Russia) Ekaterina traveled to Illinois, Washington, California, Nevada, Arizona, Florida, Washington D.C., New York, and Massachusetts.

Maciej Pluta’05 (Poland) Maciej traveled to New York, Massachusetts, Washington D.C., Florida, Nevada, Arizona, California, Washington, and Illinois.


Omondi Kasidhi ’05 (Kenya) “History, Geography, and Culture of the United States” Omondi traveled to Massachusetts, Georgia, Virginia, Oklahoma, Arizona, and California.

Yee Mon Thu ’04 (Myanmar) Yee Mon traveled to Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Maine, Georgia, and Colorado.


Choedpong Khannabha ’04 (Thailand) Choedpong traveled to Colorado, Washington D.C., Florida, New York, Louisiana, and Illinois.

Andreata Muforo ’04 (Zimbabwe) Andreata traveled to Wisconsin, California, Arizona, New York, Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida.


Swamunu Ntalu ’02 (Democratic Republic of Congo) Swamunu traveled to Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and Arizona.

Xu Wang ’04 (China) “Cross Country Biking Tour of the U.S.” Xu traveled to California, Nevada, Utah, Colorado, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, and Indiana.

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