Glasgow graduate receives prestigious Fulbright Award

Published: 20 July 2012

University of Glasgow Alumnus, Dr Robert Lawson, Receives a prestigious Fulbright Award to the US

University of Glasgow Alumnus, Dr Robert Lawson, Receives a prestigious Fulbright Award to the US

Dr Robert Lawson, an alumnus of the University of Glasgow, has received a Scottish Studies Fulbright Award to enable him to research at the University of Pittsburgh on one of the most prestigious and selective scholarship programmes operating world-wide.

Robert received an M.A. (Hons) in English Language and Linguistics in 2004, an M.Phil (Distinction) in 2005 and a PhD in 2009, all from the University of Glasgow, Scotland. In 2004, he was the recipient of an Economic and Social Research Council postgraduate scholarship to conduct research on the relationship between language, violence and identity among working-class adolescent males in Glasgow in one of the first ethnographically-informed sociolinguistic accounts of language variation in Scotland. During his PhD, he was awarded a Mac Robertson traveling scholarship, which allowed him to undertake a period of overseas research training in linguistic anthropology and urban ethnography at the University of Arizona. In 2009, he joined the School of English at Birmingham City University as a lecturer in linguistics. He currently has several publications in print and under review with major journals, including the Journal of Sociolinguistics and Gender and Language. 

Commenting on receiving the Award, Robert said: ‘It’s a privilege to have been chosen as the Fulbright Scottish Studies Scholar and I’m very excited to be part of one of the world’s most prestigious exchange programmes. As a Fulbright Scholar, I’ll be working on two book projects during my time at the University of Pittsburgh. The first is a research monograph which focuses on the intersection of language, masculinity and toughness in Glasgow, and the second is an edited volume which showcases contemporary sociolinguistic research on speech communities in Scotland. The Award is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to develop my research on urban adolescent language use, to learn from some of the international leaders in sociolinguistics, and to build links between institutions in Scotland, England and America. I’m looking forward to being able to share my experiences of living in both Scotland and England with the people I meet in America and to bringing back home a better insight into American culture.’

The Fulbright Commission selects scholars through a rigorous application and interview process. In making these awards the Commission looks not only for academic excellence but a focused application, a range of extracurricular and community activities, demonstrated ambassadorial skills, a desire to further the Fulbright Programme and a plan to give back to the recipient’s home country upon returning.

Nearly 300,000 extraordinary women and men from all over the world have had their lives changed as participants in the Fulbright Programme. Of these alumni, approximately 15,000 UK nationals have studied in the US and 12,000 US nationals in the UK on Fulbright educational exchange programmes

Notable alumni of the US-UK Commission include: Malcolm Bradbury, novelist; Liam Byrne, politician; Milton Friedman, economist and Nobel Prize Winner 1976; Charles Kennedy, politician; John Lithgow, actor; Tarik O’Regan, composer; Sylvia Plath, poet; Lord William Wallace, politician; Ian Rankin, novelist; Sir Christopher Rose QC, judge; Baroness (Shirley) Williams, politician; Vanessa Heaney, journalist BBC World Service; and Toby Young, journalist and playwright.

The Commission is funded partially by the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills in the UK and the US Department of State, with additional support coming from a variety of individual and institutional partners including many leading UK universities and an annual contribution from the Scottish Government.

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First published: 20 July 2012

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