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2015 Fulbright Grant Awardee Erica Mukherjee


Erica MukherjeeErica Mukherjee

Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Program: History – Doctoral
Destination: India
Grant type: Study/Research

What is the goal of your Fulbright experience?
At the end of my Fulbright experience I hope to gather enough primary source research material to provide a firm foundation for my dissertation. I also hope to have made lasting contacts with other scholars of Indian history both through the Fulbright program and through my affiliated institution.

What are you most excited about with your Fulbright grant?
Perhaps obviously, I’m excited that I have a source of outside funding that allows me to complete a crucial stage of my dissertation research without going into debt. Additionally, however, I am excited for the network of scholars, Fulbright and otherwise, that I will encounter when doing my work in India. Both my pending affiliation with the Centre for Studies in Social Sciences and the network of Fulbright scholars in Delhi will provide with opportunities to meet new colleagues and learn about current work being done in Indian history and related fields.

How does your Fulbright fit in with your long-term career goals?
I am currently working on my PhD in South Asian history. To complete my dissertation I need to spend a significant period of time doing primary source research in various archives in India. After completing my dissertation I will be looking for work as a professor. If my future students are interested in applying for a Fulbright or related grant, my experience in writing a successful application will help me to guide them during their process.

Is there any other thought or comment you’d like to share about your Fulbright plans or hopes?
The first time I went to India for an extended stay I went alone, without any sort of support system or safety net. Thankfully, I had a wonderful experience and have returned to the country many times since. Because of my experience, however, I really appreciate the support that the Fulbright-Nehru system has already begun to provide. The staff at the India Fulbright office have been wonderful in conveying important information and answering my questions in a timely manner. I feel very confident that if I run into any sort of bureaucratic trouble, such as getting the correct permissions to enter an archive, I will have both the Fulbright name and staff to help me accomplish my professional goals. It feels comforting to know that someone is supporting my work, though hopefully I will not need to call on them.

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