Two Lebanon Valley College Scholars Named as Fulbrights

Lindsay Keiser & Mary Beard

Nineteen LVC students and alumni were named Fulbright Finalists in the past eight years.


Dr. Philip Benesch, Director of Pre-Law and External Scholarships & Fellowships and Associate Professor of Political Science, announced that Lindsay Keiser ’24 and Mary Beard ’20 were named Fulbright Finalists for the 2024-2025 academic year.

“These awards are a testament to the quality of a Lebanon Valley College education and the close, personal mentorship our faculty provide to students and alumni daily,” said Dr. James M. MacLaren, LVC president. “Dr. Benesch is the perfect example of this commitment to student achievement.”

Keiser, of Fredericksburg, Pa., graduated with a Bachelor of Science in ACS Chemistry and a minor in History this past Saturday. She was awarded a Fulbright Study/Research award to complete a Master of Science in Analytical and Polymer Science at Warwick University, United Kingdom.

She was highly active at The Valley, participating in student-faculty research, the College’s literary magazine, Green Blotter, and The Pride of The Valley Marching Band. Keiser was a member of the Flute and Percussion ensembles and presented research at the annual Inquiry Symposium and an American Chemical Society National Conference. She was a member of the College’s Rho Rho chapter of the Gamma Sigma Epsilon Chemistry Honor Society, Sigma Alpha Phi Honor Society, and Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society.

“I am ecstatic to spend a year continuing my education at a renowned UK institution,” said Keiser. “I look forward to connecting with museum professionals and learning more about cultural heritage science. I am immensely grateful for the many LVC personnel who encouraged me to pursue this opportunity. I have long been intrigued by how heritage science combines with chemistry and history and am grateful that the Fulbright Commission encourages this curiosity.”

Beard ’20, of Lebanon, was selected for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Award to the Slovak Republic. She became interested in pursuing a Fulbright and working in international education after being employed by the Institute of International Education as part of the institute’s Fulbright arm.

As an undergraduate, Beard participated in a College-sponsored service trip to the Dominican Republic, studied in LVC’s Maastricht, The Netherlands, Program, and was inducted into the Sigma Iota Rho and Pi Sigma Alpha honor societies.

Beard is a health liaison for Church World Service and a substitute teacher in the Lebanon School District.

“I am honored that the Fulbright Program in the U.S. and Slovakia and the U.S. Department of State chose me for this distinguished award and see my passion for global education,” noted Beard. “I cannot wait to live in Slovakia and immerse myself in the culture and day-to-day life while teaching English at a high school music conservatory in the capital. I’ve been fascinated by maps and culture since childhood, and my enthusiasm flourished when I became an LVC Global Studies major. I want to thank Dr. Philip Benesch [Associate Professor of Political Science] and Dr. Chris Dolan [Professor of Political Science and Director of LVC’s Master’s in Intelligence & Security Studies Program] for their invaluable support and guidance throughout the grant process.”

“Lindsay and Mary will benefit tremendously from their Fulbright experiences and being immersed in another culture,” said Dr. Benesch. “The academic, professional, and social knowledge they gain will serve them well throughout their careers and lives.”

The Fulbright competition administered at Lebanon Valley College by Dr. Philip Benesch. He provides advice and mentorship for numerous national and international scholarships and fellowships. Dr. Benesch can be contacted at by students interested in applying to the Fulbright Program or any other national or international fellowships and scholarships.


The Fulbright U.S. Student Program

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program expands perspectives through academic and professional advancement and cross-cultural dialogue. Fulbright creates connections in a complex and changing world. In partnership with more than 140 countries worldwide, the Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers unparalleled opportunities in all academic disciplines to passionate and accomplished graduating college seniors, graduate students, and young professionals from all backgrounds. Program participants pursue graduate study, conduct research, or teach English abroad.

The U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) administers the Program under policy guidelines established by the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board (FFSB) in close coordination with binational commissions and foundations in 49 countries, U.S. embassies in more than 100 other countries, and cooperating agencies in the United States.

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