Xavier University of Louisiana has been named a Fulbright Historically Black College and University Institutional Leader by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA). The Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leader designation recognizes Xavier’s noteworthy engagement with the Fulbright Program, which is currently celebrating its 75th anniversary.

May 24, 2021

ECA created the Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leaders initiative in recognition of the special role the nation’s 105 HBCUs play in making sure students, faculty, and administrators from all backgrounds are able to participate in and benefit from the Fulbright Program. The campuses being recognized today have taken part in a wide range of Fulbright Program activities that benefit their faculty, students, and administrators, including advising their U.S. students, welcoming foreign students, scholars, and Foreign Language Teaching Assistants, and building connections through International Education Administrators seminars.

The inaugural Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leaders were announced in 2019. This year marks the second time that Xavier achieved this recognition. The campuses highlighted this year demonstrated engagement with Fulbright exchange participants and promoted Fulbright Program opportunities on their campuses during the 2019-2020 academic year.

Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Matthew Lussenhop praised the institutions, stating, “Congratulations to this year’s 20 Fulbright Historically Black College and University Institutional Leaders. We salute you and your institutions for your engagement with the Fulbright Program, and for your commitment to providing life-changing opportunities to students, faculty, and administrators. HBCU participation is critical to fully representing the diversity of the United States through the Fulbright Program. This initiative is part of the U.S. Department of State’s long-standing commitment to build diversity and inclusion within the Fulbright Program and within the Bureau’s international exchange programs overall.”

The Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s premier international academic exchange program. A hallmark of the Fulbright Program has been its longstanding commitment to diversity, striving to ensure that its participants reflect U.S. society and societies abroad. The Program collaborates with a host of diversity-related organizations such as the White House Initiative on HBCUs, the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, the National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange, the American Association of Community Colleges, Diversity Abroad, and many others.

On June 3, the Fulbright Program will host a Fulbright HBCU Symposium to discuss Fulbright opportunities and resources for HBCUs.


The Fulbright Program was created to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. Fulbright is the world’s largest and most diverse international educational exchange program. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Fulbright is active in more than 160 countries worldwide and partners with participating governments, host institutions, corporations, and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States. Many of these organizations also provide direct and indirect support. ECA sponsors the Fulbright Program, and several non-profit, cooperative partners implement and support the program on the Bureau’s behalf. For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State, please visit http://eca.state.gov/fulbright.


The HBCU Institutional Leaders will be announced on May 24 on the Fulbright Program’s social media accounts: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn, as well as
on eca.state.gov/fulbright and the Fulbright U.S. Student and Fulbright Scholar websites.

Throughout the week (May 24-28), the Fulbright Program’s social media accounts will highlight the HBCU Institutional Leaders through stories and a video collaboration with Watch the Yard, an online community for the Black college experience. The Fulbright Program’s flagship Twitter account will also co-host a Twitter chat with the Fulbright HBCU affinity group and the Rutgers Center for Minority-Serving Institutions on HBCU engagement with Fulbright and international education.

2021 marks the 75th Anniversary of the Fulbright Program. Celebrations throughout the year and a dedicated Fulbright 75th anniversary website showcase the impressive accomplishments and legacy of the program and highlight Fulbright alumni, partner countries, and anniversary events, both in the United States and around the world.

On June 3, the Fulbright Program will host a Fulbright HBCU Symposium to discuss Fulbright opportunities and resources for HBCUs, the benefits of a Fulbright experience, and the role that the Fulbright Program plays in supporting HBCU campus internationalization, global awareness, and engagement. This public workshop is open to all HBCU faculty, staff, and stakeholders, as well as individuals from other institutions who are interested in attending. It will feature remarks by leaders at the U.S. Department of State; representatives of Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leaders, including Prairie View A&M President Dr. Ruth Simmons; and other Fulbright stakeholders. Registration is required.

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