Academics People and Community

Two ’Canes selected for prestigious Fulbright Award

Recent graduate Emma Hantgan and sophomore Neal Daniel were each chosen to receive a Fulbright Award, which will grant them the opportunity to study abroad while being fully immersed in a new culture.
Photo: Neal Daniel and Emma Hantgan
Neal Daniel and Emma Hantgan were each chosen to receive a Fulbright Award.

Emma Hantgan has wanted to live and study abroad since she was 10.

She was inspired by her family vacation to Jerusalem, Israel, when she visited her relatives for the first time. 

“It really shaped my perception of wanting to learn about new cultures and wanting to be in new places often,” said Hantgan. “Traveling to see my family, who lived so far from me, definitely sparked my interest in traveling and wanting to learn about new places.” 

From there her desire to learn new languages, like French and Mandarin, grew and she began taking courses in high school to prepare for the future. 

In May 2022, Hantgan graduated cum laude from the University of Miami with a bachelor’s degree in both international studies and Chinese studies with minors in Judaic studies and Latin American studies. Most recently, she was awarded a Fulbright Study/Research award from the Fulbright U.S. Student Program to pursue a master’s degree in security and diplomacy at Tel Aviv University. There, she will continue to develop her research project, “Power Balancing in the Middle East: A Case Study of the Belt and Road Initiative.” 

“In my undergraduate coursework and internships in the government and nongovernmental organizations, I developed an interest in the connections between public diplomacy, economics, and power politics,” said Hantgan. “I am excited for the opportunity to immerse myself in Israeli culture and research and attend classes with leading scholars and practitioners in the field. 

The Fulbright Study/Research award provides grants for graduating seniors, graduate students, young professionals, and artists from all backgrounds to pursue graduate study, conduct research, or teach English abroad. 

Neal Daniel, a sophomore majoring in innovation, technology, and design, has been selected to study at Glasgow School of Art and the University of Strathclyde, both in Scotland, on one of the most prestigious and selective summer scholarship programs worldwide. 

He was selected by the US-UK Fulbright Commission to experience the United Kingdom for nearly a month this summer. He hopes to learn how Glasgow has evolved in comparison to Miami, because they are both seeking to become innovation hubs. The program encourages first-year students and sophomores, who have little to no experience in international travel, to study abroad. It gives participants the opportunity to explore the cultures, heritages, and history of the U.K. while gaining credit at a U.K. university. 

One of four children, Daniel said he is the most stoic of them all. But he admittedly broke character once he received the news that he would be spending some of his summer semester abroad. 

“When I got the email saying that I was selected, I was with some of my friends and I literally screamed—that was one of the times I can objectively and explicitly say that I was excited,” said Daniel, a Douglasville, Georgia, native. 

“By driving myself into the ocean that will be Scotland, I’ll force myself to swim and learn something new and seek the things that are out of the norm for me, so that I can grow from it,” said Daniel. 

In addition to immersing himself in Glasgow and forging new friendships with other like-minded students, Daniel is also hoping to enjoy a few soccer matches as he is an avid fan of the sport. 

“I really enjoy soccer and where I’ll be staying, my dorm, it is basically bisecting the two stadiums of the largest soccer teams in Scotland,’ he said. “I’m really excited to enjoy a game in my free time.”  

Daniel and Hantgan are both thankful to the Prestigious Awards and Fellowships unit in the Office of Academic Enhancement and faculty at the University for providing helpful feedback and reviewing their applications before submitting. 

“I am thankful for the feedback as I think that the thorough review process took my application to the next level,” said Hantgan.

If you are interested in learning more about either of these award opportunities, contact Prestigious Awards and Fellowships at