IFLE Newsletter - November 2020

US Department of Education Newsletter

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Volume 6 | Issue 3 | November 2020

IFLE Header - March 2017


Fulbright-Hays Virtual Summit on Nov. 17

Fulbright-Hays Virtual Summit Invitation - Nov. 17 at 1pm ET

You're invited to join us tomorrow, Tuesday Nov. 17, for the inaugural Fulbright-Hays Virtual Summit! The summit will highlight and celebrate the accomplishments of distinguished alumni of our Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad fellowships program, the Group Projects Abroad program, and the Seminars Abroad program


The virtual summit will feature a keynote address from Leela Hazzah, executive director and cofounder of Lion Guardians, a conservation organization dedicated to finding and enacting long-term solutions for people and lions to coexist across Africa. Hazzah founded the organization after conducting research in Kenya with the support of a 2008 Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad fellowship. Hazzah was named among the Top 10 CNN Heroes for 2014


The event will also include opening remarks by Paul Winfree, chair of the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, and panel discussions with program alumni focusing on dissertation research experiences, curriculum projects, language learning experiences, and the impact of Fulbright-Hays programs on their careers.


No registration is required for this virtual summit. To watch the event, simply click the following link at 1 p.m. ET on Nov. 17!




Click here at 1 p.m. ET on Nov. 17 to attend the Virtual Summit

Happy International Education Week 2020!

IEW 2020 Video Remarks from Secretary Betsy DeVos

International Education Week (IEW) is an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. This joint initiative of the U.S. Department of Education (Department) and the U.S. Department of State is an opportunity to highlight the value of global and cultural competencies and promote programs that help U.S. students and teachers develop global skills for success in the 21st century.


Join us in celebrating International Education Week 2020:



Announcing our Fiscal Year 2020 Awards

FY 2020 Awards

The Department awarded more than $71.1 million in Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 new and non-competing continuation grants to help strengthen the capacity and performance of American education in world languages, area and international studies, and research. The grant programs are authorized under the Fulbright-Hays Act, also known as the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, and Title VI of the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended, and are administered by the International and Foreign Language Education (IFLE) office in the Office of Postsecondary Education.


Through these programs, the Department aims to prepare America's students with the global competencies necessary to become leaders who are highly competent in world languages, international studies, and the critical thinking skills to fill roles in national security, diplomacy, international business, and education. These grants support our students, teachers, faculty, administrators, and institutions of higher education as they engage in projects focused on international studies, world languages, cross-cultural understanding, and research.


The recipients of FY 2020 Title VI and Fulbright-Hays grant awards proposed a wide range of activities, including K–16 interdisciplinary curriculum projects, global competencies for pre-service teacher training, collaborations with minority-serving institutions and community colleges, outreach, and programs that expand global opportunities for K–16 educators.


The total amount awarded for FY 2020 new and non-competing continuation grants, by program, is as follows:


New Awards


Title VI Programs

Fulbright-Hays Programs

Non-Competing Continuation Awards under Title VI

For further details, visit the program "Awards" pages linked above to view grantee lists and abstracts, and explore the Google map of FY 2020 IFLE program grantees below.


Google Map of FY 2020 Grantees

FY 2020 Google Map of IFLE Grantees

Explore our Google map of FY 2020 IFLE grantees to learn about the Title VI domestic projects being implemented on campuses across the United States and the Fulbright-Hays overseas projects being conducted around the world. These projects strengthen international education experiences and foreign language for students, participants, and dissertation researchers.


This map provides a user-friendly way for viewers to get a sense of the extensive reach of the Title VI and Fulbright-Hays grantee institutions featured, as well as the diversity of our grantee institutions.



Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad Alum Honored as 2020 International Educator of the Year

Greg Hill

Greg Hilla high school teacher in Texas' Mesquite Independent School District since 2001 and alumnus of the Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (GPA) Program, has been named 2020 International Educator of the Year by the World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth. For more than 20 years, Hill has inspired his students to think beyond their hometowns.


Hill said that “service, leadership, and dedication” best describe his commitment to international education. He teaches AP Human Geography, World History, and American Cultural Studies at Mesquite's Dr. John D. Horn High School. 


Through his work and dedication, Hill not only inspires his students but also provides an example for other teachers to excite students about the world. He manages two Facebook groups for other educators, AP Human Geography Teachers of Texas and World Geography Teachers of Texas, which provide a forum for teachers to share teaching materials with one another to ensure their students are receiving the most engaging and interesting education possible.


In 2016, Hill was named a distinguished K–12 teacher by the National Council for Geographic Education. The following year, he spent a month in Ecuador and Peru as the only social studies teacher in the Fulbright-Hays GPA project organized by the The Ohio State University's Center for Latin American Studies. Hill has also traveled to multiple other countries in Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America. He believes travel breaks down barriers and hopes that through opening the eyes of his students to new places that he can inspire them to open their minds to the world.

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Inaugural Intensive Nepali Language Workshop Draws Students From Across the U.S.

Nepali Class Screenshot

The University of Washington’s (UW) South Asia Center, a Title VI National Resource Center, conducted its inaugural intensive Nepali language workshop this summer, bringing together 26 language learners from across the country for two weeks of online learning sessions. 


Organized by the center’s Nepal Studies Initiative to prepare faculty and students planning to work, study, or conduct research in Nepal, the workshop was originally designed to be held in person on UW’s Seattle campus. The COVID-19 pandemic quickly put an end to international travel plans and in-person gatherings on campus, however, so the workshop was adapted to an online format using Zoom. Professor Binod Shrestha of the University of British Columbia led the workshop remotely from his home in Canada, with the help of Sauharda Rai, a UW Ph.D. student in international studies and a native of Nepal.


Shrestha and Rai developed a course plan that combined traditional grammar lessons with speaking and listening exercises held in Zoom breakout rooms, interactive games, and virtual visits from Nepali native speakers. Reflecting the new reality of online instruction in the time of COVID-19, the Center opened up admission to students and professionals from outside the UW community. The response was striking. The center received over 30 applications, and a cohort of 26 language learners joined the workshop.


In addition to current college students and faculty studying Nepali for research purposes, participants included nonprofit professionals working in global health and education, a COVID-19 contact tracer responsible for taking calls with Nepali speakers over the phone, and a filmmaker brushing up on language skills before returning to the field. Participant Elizabeth Dobbins received a Fulbright fellowship to teach English in Nepal next year and plans to use her Nepali skills to work with Bhutanese communities in her home state of Ohio upon her return. Christopher Kemp, Acting Assistant Professor of Global Health at UW, is part of a multi-year, multi-sectoral research project focused on improving food systems in the country. Christina Juan, an incoming Ph.D. student in global health at George Washington University, plans to conduct mixed-methods research on gender and adolescent mental health for her dissertation. 


“For anyone who plans to travel to Nepal or is interested in learning the language, I highly recommend this course,” said Juan. “It was well done, especially given all the complexities of piloting a course and, on top of that, transitioning everything to an online format during a global health crisis.”

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Georgia Tech National Resource Center Establishes New Atlanta Global Research and Education Collaborative

Atlanta Global Research and Education Collaborative

The Atlanta Global Studies Center (AGSC) , a Title VI National Resource Center (NRC)is now home to a new global research and education collaborative that brings five Metro Atlanta colleges and universities together. The Atlanta Global Research and Education Collaborative (AGREC), composed of Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech), Georgia State University, Emory University, Spelman College, and Agnes Scott College, will help connect the region's international assets through an emphasis on supporting "global at home" projects that serve students, faculty, and community partners and define the metropolitan area as a hub for global education and research. As part of its initial programs, AGREC offers grants to support collaborative, interdisciplinary, and cross-university research and education projects with a focus on global engagement. 


Leveraging its status as a Title VI NRC, the AGSC was able to secure seed funding from Georgia Tech and mobilize partners to launch the initiative, which will deepen internationalization efforts across higher education institutions in the Greater Atlanta region.


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Nov. 21 Workshop: “Explorers, Makers, and Merchants: An Investigative Journey into Global Commodities”

UT Austin Hemispheres logo

UT Hemispheres, the International Outreach Consortium at the University of Texas at Austin, is offering a free workshop for educators on Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020 (10:30 a.m. to noon CT).


Turn your classroom into an immersive world journey through activities that encourage investigation and collaborative learning. Track everyday commodities across time and space to reveal enduring economic and social impacts. Leave with a complete investigative tool kit that will assist with enhancing students' critical thinking skills, decision-making skills, and a better understanding of geographic, historical, and cultural literacy.



“Explorers, Makers and Merchants: An Investigative Journey into Global Commodities”

Saturday, Nov. 21, 2020

10:30 a.m. to noon CST

CPE Credits: 1.5

Hosted by: UT Hemispheres, UTeach Liberal Arts, and the Texas Council for the Social Studies


Registration: https://utexas.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJIrfu6gqjMuE91ftoYeYqWhGeJKasYm5fTe 

(You must have a Zoom account to register. Create your free account here.)

Registration deadline: Friday, Nov. 20, 2020


UT Hemispheres is supported in part by funding from the U.S. Department of Education's Title VI National Resource Centers Program.

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New Resource Website for Distance Language Learning

Distance Learning Resource Website

The University of Utah’s Center for Latin American Studies, Asia Center, and Second Language Teaching and Resource Center recently debuted a new resource website for world language instructors. The resources found on this website provide world language faculty and instructors in high school and higher education classrooms with strategies and resources for teaching world languages online. They were designed specifically to support instructors who follow a task-based, proficiency-oriented approach for language instruction. 


Topics include:

  • general principles of online language teaching and online course design
  • tools to teach grammar and vocabulary
  • recommendations to engage students with the target language in interactive and communicative activities

Each section includes short videos, power point slides and assignments to engage you in developing your own approach to online or blended language instruction.


The University of Utah centers that developed this resource are recipients of U.S. Department of Education grants under the Title VI National Resource Centers and Title VI Language Resource Centers programs.

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Self-Learning Modules for Korean Language

Self-Learning Module for Korean

The George Washington University's East Asia National Resource Center, recipient of a Title VI National Resource Centers (NRC) grant for FYs 2018–2021, recently published “Language for Professionals” self-learning modules for Korean language study. These free and open-to-access modules for self-study are meant to serve as supplementary learning resources for language learners. 

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“Teach the Andes” Repository and Global Teacher Seminar Lesson Plans

"Teach the Andes" Repository

The Center for Latin American Studies at The Ohio State University, a Title VI National Resource Center, has two new resources for educators: “Teach the Andes K–12 Repository” and “Global Teacher Seminar Lesson Plans: Where does our food come from? Global Agricultural and Economic Sustainability.” The new websites are both open-access resources for K–12 Spanish teachers or educators that would like to include Latin American content in their classrooms.  


“Teach the Andes K–12 Repository” utilizes an interdisciplinary approach to teaching and studying the region, offering resources that provide a critical understanding of the Andes in dynamic terms that bridge past and present, and modern and traditional. Through the curated resources, teaching the Andes can become a model for generating innovative approaches to K–12 education more broadly. 


“Global Teacher Seminar Lesson Plans: Where does our food come from? Global Agricultural and Economic Sustainability” inform K–12 teachers on issues related to global agricultural and economic sustainability by focusing on various global regions including Africa, Asia, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Middle East. Topics include agricultural trends and practices, food access and distribution, intersections with environmental and economic sustainability, and how it all relates to our own food decisions.


These resources were developed with grant support from the Title VI National Resource Centers program.

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IFLE Welcomes Matthew Robinson

Matthew Robinson joins IFLE as an education program specialist in the International Studies Division. He brings with him over 10 years of postsecondary teaching experience, having taught courses focused on the intersections of education, language, and culture both in the U.S. and abroad. Robinson brings an international focus to his Fulbright-Hays program portfolio, drawing on his experiences living abroad, including working as a lecturer at the Royal University of Bhutan, an English language fellow in Timor Lorosa’e (East Timor), and a Peace Corps volunteer in Kiribati. He is a Ph.D. candidate in social foundations of education at the University of Virginia, and his dissertation research focuses on the educational dimensions of contemporary Hawaiian wayfinding. He holds a master’s degree in TESOL from the Middlebury Institute of International Studies, and a bachelor’s degree in music from the University of California, Santa Barbara.



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Seeking IFLE Interns

Intern with IFLE

We seek motivated students who are eager to learn and work as part of our team as an unpaid full- or part-time intern during the summer, fall, and/or spring. Visit our website for more information.

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We want to hear from you! Do you have suggestions for webinar topics? Ideas for things to include in future newsletters? Send them to Carolyn Collins at carolyn.collins@ed.gov.

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