IFLE Newsletter - December 2021

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Volume 7 | Issue 4 | December 2021

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Go Global ED podcast

Go Global Ed Podcast

As part of our 2021 International Education Week celebration and the 60th Anniversary of the Fulbright-Hays programs last November, the International and Foreign Language Education (IFLE) office launched the new Go Global ED podcast featuring six episodes. If you haven’t already, take the opportunity to tune into each episode on YouTube to learn more about the Fulbright-Hays and Title VI programs, the amazing alumni, how the programs have impacted their careers, and for helpful suggestions for prospective applicants and participants who may wish to apply in the future!

  • Introduction: A Conversation with Cheryl Gibbs, senior director, IFLE, on International Education Week and 60 Years of the Fulbright-Hays programs — Listen to Cheryl Gibbs (14:35)
  • Ida Rousseau Mukenge, a five-time Fulbright recipient, who organized two Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad during her career at Morehouse College — Listen to Ida Mukenge (32:00)
  • Amy Barsanti, second grade teacher and a 2021 Fulbright-Hays Seminar Abroad participant to Iceland — Listen to Amy Barsanti (26:00)
  • Corey Holmes, senior professional staff member and foreign policy advisor for the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Africa, Global Health, and Global Human Rights and a 2017-2018 Fulbright-Hays Group Project Abroad fellow to South Africa — Listen to Corey Holmes (20:20)
  • Diana Chioma Famakinwa, assistant director, African Studies Program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and a 2018-2019 Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Abroad Research fellow to Nigeria — Listen to Dr. Diana Famakinwa (19:10)
  • Title VI Deep Dive into the Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language program (UISFL): A Conversation with Tanyelle Richardson, senior program manager (IFLE) and Bill Phelan, project director of a UISFL institutional grant awarded to Cornell University in 2018 — Listen to learn more about UISFL Grants (24:20)
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35 Hispanic-Serving Institutions named Fulbright HSI Leaders

The U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) recently announced a new initiative recognizing the strong engagement of Hispanic-Serving Institutions (HSIs) with the Fulbright program. Through this inaugural “Fulbright HSI Leader” designation, ECA recognizes 35 HSIs that have demonstrated noteworthy engagement with Fulbright during the 2019-2021 academic years.


HSI Leaders

The inaugural Fulbright HSI Leaders were announced on Oct. 27, during the plenary session at the annual conference of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU). The honored colleges and universities include three associate and baccalaureate institutions, 16 masters institutions, and 16 doctoral institutions (view the announcement here). ECA established this designation to acknowledge the strong partnerships between the Fulbright program and HSIs, and to encourage the entire network of HSIs to increase their Fulbright engagement.


On July 28, Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona and Secretary of State Antony Blinken released a “Joint Statement of Principles in Support of International Education,” which outlines the many benefits of international education and the need for “all Americans (...) to be equipped with global and cultural competencies.” The Fulbright HSI Leaders Initiative supports the goals of the joint statement, including the principle that U.S. participants in international exchanges should reflect the diversity of the United States.

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Extended deadline to apply to Group Projects Abroad program

Extended Deadline for FY 2022 Group Projects Abroad Program

The deadline to apply to the fiscal year (FY) 2022 Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (GPA) program has been extended to Jan. 26, 2022.


The GPA program provides grants to institutions and private, nonprofit education entities that organize programs for K-12 teachers, college students, and faculty to engage in short-term or long-term overseas projects focused on training, research, and curriculum development in modern foreign languages and area studies. GPA short-term projects include seminars, curriculum development, and group research or study. GPA long-term projects support advanced intensive overseas programs that focus on languages, the humanities, or social sciences.


IFLE expects to make 25 new awards totaling approximately $3.3 million under the FY 2022 GPA competition. The application is now available at www.grants.gov. Please refer to the official notice in the Federal Register for further details about the FY 2022 competition.

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Still accepting applications for the Seminars Abroad program

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There is still time for K-16 teachers and school administrators to apply to participate in the 2022 Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad (SA) program! This program provides U.S. educators in the arts, social sciences, and humanities with opportunities to participate in short-term seminars abroad to improve their understanding and knowledge of the peoples and cultures of other countries. Participants draw on their experiences during the program to create new or to enhance existing cross-cultural curricula for use in their U.S. classrooms and school systems.


In 2022, summer seminars will be offered in the Philippines, Hungary, Norway, and Germany. The SA program covers airfare, room and board, and instructional materials and learning activities costs. All educator and administrator participants are responsible for a cost-share of $650. The deadline to apply is Dec. 28, 2021. Please visit the program website for more information.

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Title VI Centers at Indiana University support Afghan evacuee resettlement efforts at Camp Atterbury

Afghan evacuees walking a nature trail at Camp Atterbury. Credit: Sgt. Dylan Bailey, U.S. Army photo

The Hamilton Lugar School of Global and International Studies at Indiana University (IU) is home to a number of Title VI centers that serve as resources to the nation for expertise in foreign languages and international studies. One of these centers is the Center for the Languages of the Central Asian Region (CeLCAR), a Title VI Language Resource Center whose mission is to foster interest in and knowledge of Central Asian languages and cultures, which contributes to our nation's capacity to respond to strategic national needs. IU took this mission to heart when it learned about the efforts to host and relocate Afghan evacuees at Camp Atterbury in Edinburgh, Indiana, located about an hour from IU's Bloomington campus.


Title VI funding provided IU the capacity to respond rapidly to the nation’s urgent needs, drawing upon the institution's deep  expertise. After contacting  the Department of State, IU was asked to provide interpreters to assist efforts at Camp Atterbury. CeLCAR and the Department of Central Eurasian Studies (CEUS), also at IU, rapidly assembled a list of two dozen speakers of Dari and Pashto who were available to provide interpretation services. The most urgent request was for female translators, and IU was able to assemble a group of expert translators — many native speakers — half of whom were women. The Department of Defense also used the CeLCAR list of language experts to send translators to Camp Atterbury. IU relied on the resources of CeLCAR and other Title VI National Resource Centers to provide translation services in Dari, Pashto, Hindi, Urdu, and Persian on an emergency basis.


IU's Language Training Center, in collaboration with CeLCAR, retooled its existing efforts to support the Special Operations Command and the National Guard by producing Dari phrase books specifically tailored to the circumstances at Camp Atterbury and the unique needs of the evacuees. IU developed these materials with young troops in mind. According to the military leadership at the base, many of these troops had not previously encountered anyone from Afghanistan nor had any experience working with refugees and evacuees.


Also benefiting from IU’s expertise was the Indiana Department of Health, which asked IU to translate signs for health awareness and public health materials.


IU continues to support the federal government in providing urgently needed assistance. The Center for the Study of Global Change, another Title VI center at IU, is developing educational materials for teachers and students as well as educational and cultural programing for the children and families at Camp Atterbury. IU is also supporting resettlement efforts as people move on to other destinations throughout the state and the country.

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Wisconsin doctoral student awarded Fulbright-Hays research fellowship for tiger conservation in Nepal

Samantha Helle

Conservation scientist Samantha Helle was recently awarded a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) fellowship by the U.S. Department of Education. Helle traveled to Nepal in 2019-2020 on a Fulbright Research grant to study how various stakeholders in wildlife-conflict hotspots proactively mitigate conflicts in policies regarding tigers and the inner workings of community-based anti-poaching units. Since then, she has collaborated with the National Trust for Nature Conservation, Women Acting Together for Change, and local buffer zone community forest user groups around the Chitwan and Parsa National Parks. Throughout her studies and career, she has been committed to studying how tiger populations thrive and the local capacity for tiger conservation outside protected areas in Nepal’s community-managed forests. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies.

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Bridgewater State University hosts international conference with support of Title VI grant

Bridgewater State University International Conference

Bridgewater State University (Bridgewater, Massachusetts), in collaboration with Tafila Technical University (Jordan), Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdellah University (Morocco), and ARID (Arab Researcher ID, a platform for Arabic-speaking academics), organized the 12th International Conference on Education & Educational Technology in June 2021. The conference aimed to provide a venue for educators, scientists, researchers, teachers, and professionals from around the world to connect and explore critical issues affecting education, innovation, transformative learning, and transnational pedagogical partnerships.


The conference featured 10 thematic sections, including technology and student learning, artificial intelligence (AI), brain-based learning, distance learning in science, arts and social science, research on education, undergraduate projects and research, new trends in special education, management in education and quality teaching, curriculum and teaching, online learning, and sustainable education. One hundred forty-two international scholars representing 19 countries (including Jordan, most of the Arab world countries, Israel, Ireland, India, Japan, South Korea, and the United States) attended the conference, and collectively gave 73 research presentations over two days. The conference was held using Zoom in both English and Arabic.


COVID restrictions sparked new tech innovations and adaptations at the conference. For example, presenters brought the geography of a place to participants through virtual and Augmented Reality technologies. Another interesting outcome was the adoption of Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL), which brought together faculty and students from across the globe into one classroom experience.


The International Conference on Education & Educational Technology was supported by the Pathways to MENA (The Middle East and North Africa) project at Bridgewater State University, supported by a Title VI Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language (UISFL) grant.

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International negotiation comes to the high school classroom

As the end of the semester approached, Timothy Nikula, a history teacher at Lincoln-Sudbury Regional High School, in Sudbury, Massachusetts, needed an activity to keep his students engaged. The seniors had graduated, and only 12 in-person and three remote juniors remained. The month prior, Nikula attended a workshop organized by the Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies at Harvard University, and he used that recent training to whip up an international negotiation activity for his students.


The “Pipelines and Politics” three-part workshop was held virtually in May for high school and community college educators. The workshop explored the political nature of pipelines and the ways in which Russia’s rich energy resources shape international relations. The final session was a negotiation simulation designed for the classroom, involving pipelines crossing Central Asia, and was led by Arvid Bell, director of the Davis Center Negotiation Task Force and a lecturer on Government at Harvard University.


International Negotiation

The negotiation activity allowed his students to get outside and unmask under the school tent. Nikula divided students into three groups, each representing a fictional Central Asian country. Remote students met with their counterparts online, while their classmates convened under the tent. “Both the content piece and the pedagogical negotiation technique piece were very usable,” said Nikula. The students did not stop with the exercise — the next day they came into the classroom debating an unrelated topic. They then used the framework and the worksheet from the previous day’s activity to work through the discussion.


The Negotiation Task Force’s interactive exercises and training simulations are typically geared towards senior decision-makers in government, military, and the private sector. However, in applying it to high school students, Bell is excited about the opportunity to work with a new audience. “These educators are looking for new tools to prepare their students for an increasingly complex world,” said Bell. “We want to help bring American diplomacy and international negotiations into the high school classroom.”


Over the past 18 months, the Davis Center outreach team has partnered with the Negotiation Task Force and other programs to offer professional development workshops for K-14 educators. These activities are made possible by a Title VI National Resource Center grant. “Figuring out how to best scaffold the development of curricular resources is a lot of work,” said Cris Martin, associate director for programs, “but the scholar-entrepreneurs have been excellent partners in this.” “Teachers are hungry for content related to Central Asia,” Martin said. “There’s simply not a lot out there for high school educators on this particular region.”


High schoolers are also hungry for region-related content, according to Nikula. His students were well versed in Eurasia, so it was a challenge to keep the class from trying to match the fictional countries used for the simulation with their real-life counterparts. The worksheet helped keep students focused. “They totally loved it,” said Nikula. “I could tell they loved it because they all wanted to go into round two.”

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National Resource Center's summer 2021 Nepali Language Program success

UW Nepali Language Program

With 41 participants from seven countries, the University of Washington (UW) South Asia Center and its Nepal Studies Initiative hosted a summer 2021 Nepali Language Program, one of the largest global gatherings for Nepali language training ... ever.


The two-week online intensive language training program had 24 beginner-level participants and 17 low-intermediate to advanced-level students, hailing from seven countries (Bangladesh, Canada, China, India, Netherlands, United Kingdom, United States). Participants included artists, college students, heritage learners, nonprofit professionals, researchers, teachers, and travelers. 


The Nepali program featured conversation practice, grammar lessons, written assignments, and online games. Many participants continued to meet after the two-week course ended for casual conversation practice and networking. Students provided the following feedback:

  • “I now feel more confident in resuming language study on my own and knowing where to find resources to fall back on if I get stuck.”
  • The instructors “helped me in overcoming my anxiety in speaking Nepali in front of others.”
  • “My Nepali pronunciation has greatly improved … and I am more confident expressing myself in everyday conversations!”
  • “I really loved the diversity of the crowd participating.”
  • “I really enjoyed the other students, who were from all over and were taking the course for such a cool variety of reasons.”
  • “There is a great value in learning a language that is so different from your own, because it forces you to think in a different way and to see things from a different perspective.”

UW produced a short YouTube video about this one-of-a-kind initiative, supported by the South Asia Center's Title VI National Resource Center grant.

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Utah National Resource Centers organize inaugural Write Global Essay Contest for teens

Write Global Essay Contest

The University of Utah's Asia Center and Center for Latin American Studies, both Title VI National Resource Centers, partnered with the Salt Lake City Public Library for the inaugural Write Global Essay Contest. This writing contest for teens asked young writers to express how they relate to the global community in 500 words or less. Prompts included experiences living or traveling outside of the United States, cultural challenges, and appreciation for languages and peoples around the world.


The contest was open from October to November, and garnered over 60 submissions. The authors ranged from students in ninth through 12th grades. Click "Read More" below to read some of the winning entries.

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Stream on YouTube: Workshop for K-12 teachers on Afghan refugee experiences

Workshop for K-12 Teachers on Afghan Refugee Experience

The United States is receiving an influx of at least 51,000 Afghan refugees, including many families with school-aged children who have been through a traumatic experience. In order to help prepare K-12 schools to welcome these students, the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Arizona (UA), a Title VI National Resource Center, recently organized a workshop for K-12 teachers to learn about Afghanistan and the refugee experience from an Afghan student’s perspective. The workshop featured presentations by:

  • Professor Shah Mahmoud Hanifi of James Madison University, on Afghan history.
  • Atifa Rawan, librarian emerita at the University of Arizona, on aspects of Afghan culture.
  • UA undergraduate student Malika Akbary on her experiences coming to Tucson as a child refugee and matriculating into the local school system.

The workshop was recorded and is now available for educators around the country to stream on YouTube.

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Jan. 21 and 22: Free virtual conference for community college educators

Internationalizing Your Community College Curriculum

The Center for Middle Eastern Studies, the Center for Latin American Studies, and the Center for Educational Resources in Culture, Language, and Literacy at the University of Arizona will host the sixth annual conference for community college educators, Jan. 21 and 22, 2022. The theme is “Internationalizing Your Community College Curriculum.”


Community colleges are doing important work educating a large percentage of postsecondary students to become part of a globalized world. As such, it is vital to internationalize the curricula of community college classes, and many instructors are already doing so. This conference will be an opportunity to share best practices for internationalizing curricula with colleagues across departments and campuses.


Friday, Jan. 21 - Saturday, Jan. 22

Cost: FREE

Held virtually via Zoom

Register at: 

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Google Map of IFLE grantees

FY 2021 Google Map of IFLE Grantees

Explore our Google map of FY 2021 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 learning 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 60th Anniversary


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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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