BOONE, N.C. — Appalachian State University is the nation’s top producer of Fulbright scholars among master’s institutions in 2019–20, according to the U.S. Department of State and Institute of International Education (IIE). A total of six Appalachian faculty plus one administrator received the prestigious award during this award cycle, a record number for the university.
This is the fourth time Appalachian has placed in the top 10 list for Fulbright U.S. Scholars among master’s institutions. Last year, the university tied for first place with College of Charleston, with four scholars each. See the list
Fulbright is a program of the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and is the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program.
The faculty recipients from Appalachian:
- The Reich College of Education’s Dr. Paul Wallace in the Department of Leadership and Educational Studies, who is spending the full 2019–20 academic year in Russia engaging in cross-cultural collaboration to prepare international leaders.
- The College of Arts and Sciences’ Dr. Richard Gray in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who is spending the full academic year teaching astronomical spectroscopy and conducting research at the University of the Free State in South Africa.
- The College of Arts and Sciences’ Mark Powell in the Department of English, who is teaching contemporary U.S. literature at Ovidius University of Constanta, in Romania, during the spring semester and conducting research for his seventh novel.
- The College of Arts and Sciences’ Dr. Christina Verano Sornito-Carter in the Department of Anthropology, who will conduct research in the Philippines in August at the University of the Philippines Visayas on heritage conservation and disaster management movements related to island dwelling in the 21st century.
- The Beaver College of Health Sciences’ Dr. Dave Williams in the Department of Nutrition and Health Care Management, who is in Austria this spring teaching health care management to a diverse group of international students at Management Center Innsbruck (MCI). He is also conducting research on Austrian and other central European biopharmaceutical ecosystems.
- The College of Arts and Sciences’ Dr. Alexandra Sterling-Hellenbrand, professor of German and global studies in the Department of Languages, Literatures and Cultures, who is teaching interdisciplinary courses this spring at the University of Graz in Austria.
A former administrator also received a Fulbright to visit India in March 2019 in relation to the recruitment of international students.
Appalachian’s Office of International Education and Development (OIED) and Office of Research encourage and support faculty applications for Fulbright awards because of what they see as the program’s global benefits. These include faculty sharing academic knowledge with colleagues and students in other countries, and then bringing the knowledge they learn from this exchange back to the Appalachian students, faculty and staff. They, in turn, develop stronger intercultural communication skills, a better understanding of others and stronger empathy skills for other cultures.
“Appalachian’s mission is to develop individuals who lead purposeful lives as engaged global citizens. The Fulbright Scholar program allows faculty to bring back to their students that global perspective in their classrooms, their research and their mentoring to students. OIED is proud to be working with the Office of Research to help faculty accomplish this mission,” said Dr. Maria Anastasiou, OIED’s executive director.
Dr. Ece Karatan, vice provost for research, said, “One of our priorities at the Office of Research has been enhancing international research opportunities. Over the last several years, we have been working closely with OIED to support our faculty applying for Fulbright fellowships. We are thrilled that our colleagues had such a phenomenal level of success in the Fulbright Scholar Program in 2019.”
About the Fulbright Program
The Fulbright Program was created to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Over 900 U.S. college and university faculty and administrators and over 2,200 U.S. students are awarded Fulbright grants annually. In addition, some 4,000 Fulbright Foreign Students and Visiting Scholars come to the United States annually to study, lecture, conduct research or teach their native language.
Since its inception in 1946, the Fulbright Program has given over 390,000 accomplished students, scholars, teachers, artists and professionals of all backgrounds and fields the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to important international problems. The global network of Fulbrighters fosters mutual understanding between the United States and partner nations, advances knowledge across communities and improves lives around the globe.
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About the Office of International Education and Development
The OIED is responsible for spearheading the internationalization efforts at Appalachian. The internationalization mission of Appalachian is to develop awareness, knowledge, appreciation and respect of cultural differences in both domestic and international contexts in its students, faculty, staff and the surrounding communities. The university is also dedicated to creating a campus environment that builds the theoretical and practical skills needed to interact effectively in a global society. Learn more at https://international.appstate.edu.
About the Office of Research
Appalachian State University’s Office of Research provides support for the research, creative, and scholarly endeavors of Appalachian faculty, staff and students. The office consists of four units: Grants Resources and Services, Sponsored Programs, Research Design and Analysis, and Research Protections. The Office of Research also collaborates with the university’s Special Funds Accounting on the fiscal management of awarded projects. Learn more at https://research.appstate.edu.
About Appalachian State University
As the premier public undergraduate institution in the Southeast, Appalachian State University prepares students to lead purposeful lives as global citizens who understand and engage their responsibilities in creating a sustainable future for all. The Appalachian Experience promotes a spirit of inclusion that brings people together in inspiring ways to acquire and create knowledge, to grow holistically, to act with passion and determination, and to embrace diversity and difference. Located in the Blue Ridge Mountains, Appalachian is one of 17 campuses in the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian enrolls nearly 21,000 students, has a low student-to-faculty ratio and offers more than 150 undergraduate and graduate majors.