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Globetrotting Gutzwiller Receives Fulbright Award

After being awarded a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship, biomedical engineer Leah Gutzwiller (’23) is about to scootch her “Home Sweet Home” about 8,000 miles—to Taiwan.

Leah Gutzwiller
Leah Gutzwiller

“I am so honored to be awarded a Fulbright,” said Gutzwiller. “I still have days where I am in shock.”

The Fulbright will support Gutzwiller for 11 months while she helps teach English in Yunlin, a county on the western coast of Taiwan.

Gutzwiller has studied in both Ireland and Italy, but this will be her first trip to Asia. However, her time on Rocky Top has given her plenty of experience outside of her comfort zone.

While she spent plenty of time with other engineers—including as President of UT’s Biomedical Engineering Society chapter—Gutzwiller also chaired the Student Government Association’s Undergraduate Senate and studied in the interdisciplinary Haslam Scholars Program.

“Engaging with people from many backgrounds has given me a lot of perspective on leadership and service, which I’m excited to take into my experiences in Taiwan,” she said.

Gutzwiller ultimately hopes to work as a translational scientist, transforming experimental science into effective procedures and public policy. Yunlin, a rural county far from the resources of Taipei, should be an immersive introduction to the field.

“Translational science is a global occupation,” Gutzwiller said. “I think living in Yunlin will help me understand how areas that are barred from scientific and healthcare collaboration respond to our world’s ever-changing needs.”

Of all the things she will miss about Knoxville, the pizza restaurant A Dopo holds a special place in her heart.

“I love their pizza,” she said. “It is the closest to authentic Italian pizza I have ever had in America.”

The restaurant’s name translates to ‘see you later,’ which also means a lot to Gutzwiller as she plans for her trip.

“I am not saying goodbye to Knoxville or my amazing home here on Rocky Top,” she said. “This is simply a ‘see you later.’ I will always be a Vol for Life. Go Vols!”


Izzie Gall (865-974-9387,