The Fulbright Program is facing an existential threat: The Administration has submitted a budget that would result in a 47% cut to the Fulbright Program for Fiscal Year 2018. We have stood for Fulbright — and it’s working. But there is more to do, and we need your help.
When the Administration proposed a budget that would result in a 47% cut to the Fulbright Program, we stood together. Over 11,000 members and friends of Fulbright signed a petition urging full funding for the Program. You contacted over 95% of members of the House and Senate — an amazing testimony to your passion and engagement, and to our community’s geographic reach. You should be proud of your contribution and our success.
On September 7, the House of Representatives voted 248 to 163 to defeat an amendment proposed by Rep. Keith Rothfus (R-PA-12) to cut the Fulbright Program by $30,000,000. This was an unusual moment for the Fulbright Program, which is often approved as part of a larger bill. This time, members were asked to vote specifically to cut the Fulbright to benefit another program. We are glad for the support of the 248 House members that included Republicans and Democrats working together to vote against the amendment. We must worry about the 163 members who might not understand the positive impact of the Fulbright Program, and we must see this as a very strong opportunity to advocate to them.
On the Senate side, the Senate Appropriations Committee has approved funding for the Fulbright Program at $240 million — a small increase over the $236 million approved by the House (and still at that level when the Rothfus Amendment failed).
Our work is not yet done. We need the collective Fulbright community joining the Association in advocating for the flagship U.S. exchange program. We urge you to come to Washington for our National Conference and Advocacy Day from November 4-7, 2017 and meet with your representatives to educate them on the global impact of the Fulbright Program.
Write to Your Senators
Register for Advocacy Day
And there’s more you can do to support Fulbright:
Register for our National Conference. The 40th annual Fulbright Association Conference will take place from November 4–7, 2017, in Washington, D.C. For the first time in its history, the conference will conclude with a Fulbright Advocacy Day on Capitol Hill. Sharing your Fulbright story with Congressional representatives in person has a significant impact.
Join our social media campaign using the hashtag #StandForFulbright. Share a highlight from your Fulbright experience and join the global Fulbright community in showing support for one another and the Program. The Fulbright Association will compile posts shared on Facebook and Twitter using #StandForFulbright to showcase the positive impact of the Fulbright Program worldwide.
Contact your college or university’s federal relations office. If you are affiliated with a higher education institution, reach out to your federal relations office to reinforce the impact of Fulbright and other federally-funded international exchange programs on your students, faculty, campus community, and local economy.
In all outreach, messaging, and social media posts, we ask you to focus on your positive and transformational Fulbright experiences, recognizing that the Fulbright Program has thrived thanks to bipartisan support for 70 years. You can be a powerful voice at a crucial moment in the history of American diplomacy. As Fulbrighters, we cannot stand by. We must act. We must Stand for Fulbright.
Sign Our Petition
Contact Your Representatives
Visit our Advocacy page for more information on our strategy, message, and making your voice heard.