Year-End Review: Multiple Honors Students, Alums Awarded Fulbright, CLS Scholarships

Four student headshots imposed on a V C U gold backgroundBy William Lineberry
University College, Honors College

Four Virginia Commonwealth University Honors College students and recent alums were selected as recipients of nationally competitive and highly sought-after domestic and international scholarships over the past year with the assistance of the VCU National Scholarship Office – helping advance their studies in fields ranging from STEM to public policy to foreign affairs.

Three Honors College alums were selected as Fulbright recipients and two were selected for the Critical Language Scholarship. These scholarship recipients represent the university’s academic excellence and stand out for their accomplishments and potential in highly competitive international and domestic applicant pools.

"We are excited to witness the transformations that each of these students and alumni will experience as a result of their scholarship or fellowship experience," said Jeff Wing, director of the National Scholarship Office. “These awards are all intended to lead to new opportunities for each recipient to investigate and consider. We know that their lives will change in ways that neither we nor they can imagine, and we are excited to see how they use these scholarships and fellowships as catalysts for an even more amazing future.”

Student recipients and details about the scholarships they received are listed below.

Fulbright U.S. Student Program 
The Fulbright Program is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.

  • Leslie Pyo (top right), painting & printmaking, Honors College, May 2016
  • Ishaan Nandwani(top left), biology, foreign languages (concentration in Spanish), Honors College, May 2023
  • Vineeth Vaidyula (bottom left), biology, Honors College, May 2023

Critical Language Scholarship
The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) is a summer study abroad program for U.S. undergraduate and graduate students to intensively study languages critical to America’s engagement with the world, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State.

Within the CLS umbrella, CLS Spark is a virtual initiative for U.S. undergraduate students to begin study of Russian, Arabic, or Chinese.

  • Ryan Jackson (bottom right), mass communications, Honors College, May 2026
  • Vineeth Vaidyula, biology, Honors College, May 2023