Amanda Liberman ’17, of Reading, Mass., has been awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Kazakhstan.

Liberman, a molecular biology major with a minor in Russian and Eurasian studies, was introduced to Kazakhstan on an extended study course in the spring of her first year at Colgate, and she was fascinated by it. Her quest to return led her to apply for multiple fellowships that could get her there.

“I first visited Almaty and Astana back in 2014. I really enjoyed learning about Central Asia through my coursework, and I started working with Dean Kimberly Germain to plan my return to Kazakhstan,” Liberman said. “Eventually, I plan to attend medical school back in the United States. In addition to my teaching this year, I plan to volunteer at a local health clinic, and I look forward to speaking with practitioners of traditional medicine in the area.”

Liberman has prior experience teaching, both as a French tutor with the Upstate Institute foreign language program and as a verbal coach doing SAT prep with Let’s Get Ready! On campus, she volunteers for the Colgate Hunger Outreach Program and is actively involved with the Colgate Jewish Union and the pan-religious community in the Memorial Chapel basement.

As a junior, Liberman was named Colgate’s first Beckman Scholar, through which she received 15 months of funding to support her molecular biology research. That research focused on developing a mathematical model for circadian rhythms and anxiety. She has also been recognized with the Max A. Shacknai Volunteerism Award and the Kingsford Prize for Public Speaking.

“Amanda has a strong interest in immersing herself in her host community and learning about local culture in Kazakhstan, plus excellent ideas about engaging students in the classroom, which made her an ideal Fulbright ETA candidate,” said Germain, Colgate’s assistant dean for fellowship advising and a close adviser to all of our Fulbright applicants. “I’m confident that she’ll have a great year and a really meaningful cross-cultural experience.”

The Fulbright program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership potential in their fields.