The U. of I.'s Urbana campus has been recognized as a "U.S. Scholar Top Producer" by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs for academic year 2014-15, with six recipients of U.S. Fulbright Scholar awards. According to a report in the Chronicle of Higher Education, the campus ranks No. 5 among U.S. research institutions in the number of faculty members receiving the prestigious award in support of teaching and research abroad.
Photo courtesy Illinois International
In addition, for the fifth consecutive year, the U. of I. was named a top producer of U.S. Fulbright Students. Thirteen Illinois students were awarded Fulbright Scholarships in 2014, placing the campus in the top 15 among public universities. The selected students are offered the opportunity to design their own program and pursue one academic year of study or research abroad.
"We are extremely proud of our six Fulbright Scholars, and very pleased to be recognized among the nation's top producers of U.S. Fulbright Scholars in this current cycle," said Reitumetse Mabokela, the vice provost for international affairs and global strategies at Illinois. "This accomplishment is another indicator of the creative and innovative thinking, overall excellence, and above all, strong desire to engage with the world beyond our borders that is so characteristic of our faculty.
"No less important is the fact that our campus is sending 13 Fulbright Student awardees this year. It shows that our students are not only motivated to have deep international experiences, but have the academic excellence to make it through a highly competitive selection process."
The Fulbright Program was founded in 1947 by Senator J. William Fulbright, who saw the program as a much-needed vehicle for promoting "mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries of the world." It sends 800 U.S. faculty and professionals and 1,800 students abroad each year to 140 different countries, allowing scholars to study, teach, conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.
The six Illinois Fulbright Scholars, with topics and institution, where they will be in residence:
- Mark Dressman, a professor of curriculum and instruction, College of Education, "Designing and Evaluating an Alternative Model of English Education in Moroccan Universities," Mohammed V University, Rabat-Chellah, Morocco
- Cara J. Wong, a professor of political science, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, "Maps in People's Heads: Effects of Ethnic Context on Political Judgments in Chile," Pontifical Catholic University of Chile, Santiago, Chile
- Luisa Maria Rosu, research associate, Illinois Science, Technology and Mathematics Initiative (ISTEM), "Investigations of Quality Criteria in STEM (Science Technology Engineering and Mathematics) Teacher Education," University of Bucharest, Bucharest, Romania
- Harley T. Johnson, a professor of mechanical science and engineering, College of Engineering, "Understanding the Effects of Defects on the Efficiency and Reliability of Solar Cell Materials," French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, Grenoble, France
- Ramona Curry, a professor of English, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, "Ethnic Diversity in/and Film in American Studies," Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
- Mohamed Boubekri, a professor of architecture, College of Fine and Applied Arts, "Assessment of a Green Architecture Project in Istanbul," Istanbul Arel University-Tepekent, Istanbul
The application process for faculty Fulbright Scholars at Illinois is coordinated by Tim Barnes, the director of Illinois Strategic International Partnerships, while student Fulbright applications are coordinated by David Schug, the director of the National and International Scholarships Program.