Sarah Cotterill receives a Fulbright Award for research at Penn State


Sarah Cotterill, an alumna from Newcastle University, has received a Fulbright All Disciplines Scholar Award to carry out research at Penn State on one of the most well-regarded and impactful scholarship programs in the world.   

As a participant, Cotterill has been selected to carry out research in the Logan Lab at Penn State. Her research in environmental engineering combines a technology she worked on during her doctorate, with an anaerobic fluidized bed membrane bioreactor (AFMBR) to treat wastewater to a high quality, with little energy input. Only three laboratories worldwide are studying AFMBR, and the Logan Lab is the only one to merge AFMBR with a bioelectrochemical system. Cotterill will explore the effect of a low operating temperature on the performance of AFMBR hybrid systems.

Cotterill, and the other 44 British grantees of the 2017-18 Fulbright cohort, will celebrate their success at a reception hosted by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office on Thursday, July 6.

Commenting on receiving the award, Cotterill said: “This fellowship is a fantastic opportunity to expand my network and the breadth of my understanding in this field. I hope to gain a working understanding of membrane bioreactors and develop as a researcher through the opportunities presented at Penn State. Logan’s group has a very international composition, with global connections, and I can’t wait to discuss ideas and experience other cultures. I hope that being a Fulbright Scholar will be both professionally and personally rewarding.”

Penny Egan CBE, Executive Director, US-UK Fulbright Commission said: “The impact of the Fulbright programme can change the world. Our Fulbrighters will return to the UK having been exposed to different cultures, value systems and schools of thought. They will have the capacity to be more empathetic global citizens and be better prepared for collaboration across borders, between the US and the UK and beyond.” 

Amy Moore, Director of the Fulbright Awards Program, added: “No greater example of the continued importance of international education can be found than in the determination and drive of our 2017-18 grantees. These students, academics and professionals have identified the relevance of intercultural cooperation to their careers. As Fulbright alumni and future leaders, they will be able to foster personal and professional connections between nations.” 

The Fulbright Commission provides the only bi-lateral, transatlantic scholarship programm, offering awards for study or research in any field, at any accredited U.S. or UK university.

The Commission selects scholars through a rigorous application and interview process, looking for academic excellence alongside a focused application, a range of extracurricular and community activities, demonstrated ambassadorial skills, a desire to further the Fulbright Programm and a plan to give back to the UK upon returning.

Typical grants include a maintenance allowance and/or a contribution towards tuition fees. Fulbright scholars receive administrative support and a cultural education programm including: visa processing, a comprehensive pre-departure orientation, enrichment opportunities in the U.S., a re-entry session and access to a global alumni network.


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David Mannion



The Penn State Civil and Environmental Engineering Department, established in 1881, is internationally recognized for excellence in the preparation of undergraduate and graduate engineers through the integration of education, research, and leadership.

Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering

212 Sackett Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-1408

Phone: 814-863-3084