Fulbright Recipient Spotlight: Erin Coggins, ETA, Bulgaria


Erin Coggins, from Alexandria, Virginia, received her bachelor’s degree in anthropology from VCU in 2014. While at VCU, Coggins was involved with the Outdoor Adventure Program and the Global Education Office.

Coggins will be teaching English in Bulgaria as a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant. After her Fulbright year, Coggins will pursue her graduate degree in international development.


What is your research focus or Erin Cogginsproposal for your Fulbright award?
I will teach English at a Bulgarian secondary school for one year, and participate in community engagement projects throughout the duration of the program.

What initially drew you to apply for the Fulbright?
Pursuing cross-cultural experiences is a passion of mine. I taught English in Japan for one year and I loved it! I was drawn to Bulgaria for its spectacular natural beauty and interesting culture.

What do you plan on doing after your Fulbright year?
Pursue my graduate degree in International Development.

What advice would you give to future applicants?
Immerse yourself as much as possible in unique and challenging experiences. This could be anything from studying abroad, to intercultural exchange programs, to volunteer work. The more you are able to set yourself a part from the other applicants, the better!

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I apply for a Fulbright? 
Erin and her ten fellow recipients from VCU worked with the National Scholarship Office (NSO) at Virginia Commonwealth University. The NSO works with VCU alumni, graduate students, and undergraduates who wish to compete for prestigious national and international scholarships, such as Fulbright.  If you are interested in applying for Fulbright or other nationally or internationally competitive scholarships, please contact the NSO at natlscholar@vcu.edu or (804) 828-6868.

How many students from VCU are awarded the Fulbright? 
With this latest group of Fulbright Student Scholarship recipients, 42 VCU students and recent alumni have been offered Fulbright awards since the National Scholarship Office was created in 2005.

Can you tell me more about the Fulbright?
Established in 1946, the Fulbright Program aims to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and other countries, through the exchange of persons, knowledge and skills. Sponsored by the United States Department of State, the Fulbright Program provides funding for students, scholars and professionals to undertake graduate study, advanced research, university teaching and teaching in elementary and secondary schools. Learn more at us.fulbrightonline.org.