Spring 2008 • Volume 14, Issue 2
Slovenian students enjoy a taste of Bradley
Every October, Bradley hosts a group of Slovenian students who are part of an exchange program orchestrated by Dr. Sharon Murphy, journalism professor emeritus. Murphy began the program in 2003 after a stint as a Fulbright professor in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Bradley students have also visited Ljubljana every spring since 2003.
The visiting students from the University of Ljubljana are chosen by their professor; most of them work for their student publication, Klin — meaning “the hook” — a magazine published seven times a year. The groups, each consisting of six students, often form close relationships with students at Bradley. The Slovenian students stay with Bradley students and faculty during their time here.
“They’ve had such good experiences here,” says Murphy. “I think that if this is any kind of ambassadorial program, it seems to be working.”
“That’s the cornerstone of the Fulbright program,” adds Murphy’s husband Brad Niemcek, former communications professor.
One of the first things the Slovenian students notice about America is its size. “They always remark on how long it takes to get from the airport [O’Hare International] down here,” says Niemcek.
The campus itself is different from what Slovenian students are used to. Murphy says campuses in Slovenia are spread out over entire cities, inhibiting access to some classes; the students enjoy Bradley’s compact layout. She also mentions that students comment on the faculty’s accessibility to students.
Murphy has many memories of the groups of Slovene students who have visited the United States, but one of her favorites is a dinner the Slovene students prepared at her home. “They had this grand meal that they cooked. All these wonderful dishes, and we invited journalism faculty, international programs faculty, and people from Caterpillar. It was a wonderful celebration. And then they all gave me a cookbook with their signatures inside it.”
Dr. Margaret Young, assistant professor of communication, joined Murphy, Niemcek, and a group of nine Bradley students on an annual return visit to Slovenia in March 2008. “Dr. Murphy is key to making this happen,” she says. “Her whole idea on this collaboration is in keeping with Bradley’s mission statement.”
Bradley’s Fulbright Scholars
Considered one of the most prestigious recognition programs for university faculty in the United States, the Fulbright Scholars program selects individuals to spend time abroad teaching, lecturing, or researching. Bradley is proud to count more than ten such scholars among its current faculty who have received this recognition during their time at the University. The international experiences of these faculty members enrich their teaching and influence students in understanding their studies in a global context.
, associate professor of international studies, was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to conduct research in Spain during the 2006–07 academic year. Her research examined trans-border water policy between Spain and Portugal, and tested the explanatory utility of several models of public policy-making. Her institutional affiliations in support of the project include the Juan March Foundation in Madrid and the Department of Human Geography at the University of Seville.
, associate professor of communication, was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to lecture at the University of Montenegro during the spring semester of 2006. His work focused on media training for students and the job outlook among media professionals. He also received two Fulbright Senior Scholar awards in 2002 and 2004, when he spent time at Liberal Arts University in Lutsk, Ukraine.
, associate professor of English, was awarded a Fulbright Scholar grant to lecture at the University of Sarajevo in Bosnia-Herzegovina during the spring 2004 semester. He was recognized for his openness to new ideas and change in his pedagogical approaches, which engaged student participation and gave them a responsibility in the learning process. He has received three Fulbright Teaching Fellowships and has taught at the University of Vienna twice, where his time led to study abroad programs for Bradley.
, professor of education, completed a four-month sabbatical in India in 2002–2003 researching indigenous healing methods and opened up exchange possibilities with Indian scholars to Bradley and for Bradley students overseas. Rybak made presentations on group counseling, strength-based assessments, mind-body integration, and other topics to faculty and graduate students at several Indian institutions of higher education.
, professor of education, was awarded a Fulbright Lecturing Award to teach social work courses at the Higher School of Social Work and Social Pedagogy “Attistiba” in Riga, Latvia, in 2001–2002.
, professor of communication, spent the 1999–2000 academic year in Bulgaria as a Fulbright Scholar at Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski,” and at the American University in Bulgaria. He also lectured at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore and at Hong Kong Baptist University.
, professor of history, won a Fulbright-Garcia Robles Senior Teaching/Research Grant in 1998. She taught a graduate seminar on the historiography of the Porfiriato at Veracruz University in Xalapa, Veracruz, and conducted research on women’s roles in Veracruz coffee production. She also received a Fulbright Scholar award to study post-revolutionary agrarian reform in Tamaulipas, Mexico. Her research has been published in two essay collections.
, associate professor of marketing, was named a Fulbright Senior Scholar in 1997–98. He taught and conducted research at Samara State Aerospace University and the International Market Institute in Samara, Russia.
, professor of international studies, was a Fulbright Senior Lecturer in 1994 at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. He taught classes on American foreign policy and international political economy. While living in Slovenia, he conducted research on the challenges of state transitions from authoritarian to democratic rule.
, professor of computer science and information systems, has continued his teaching and research activities in artificial intelligence in the areas of knowledge-based systems, machine learning, evolutionary computation, intelligent agents, logic programming, medical informatics, and data mining. During spring and summer of 1994, he was a visiting professor at the University of Malta under a Fulbright Senior Scholar grant.
, professor of political science, was named a Fulbright Senior Scholar in 1988–1989 and taught American politics courses at the University of Tokyo and the national government’s Foreign Service Training Institute in Tokyo, Japan.
Read the NoteBook article "A cross-cultural Fulbright experience"
Last semester, Dr. Dharitri Ramaprasad of Bangalore, India, came to Bradley under the visiting lecturer program. More >
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