Ready for an Adventure

In September 2013, I submitted an application for the Fulbright Scholar Program. Today, two years and four months later, I am in the very final stages of preparing for my participation in the grant, which is sponsored by U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Screen Shot 2016-01-30 at 9.12.53 AMOn Monday, the adventure begins. I will be traveling to the United Arab Emirates to work with Al Ain University of Science and Technology. This is the first of two three-week sessions during which I will deliver of a series lectures, at the both the graduate and undergraduate level, facilitate faculty workshops, and work with University leaders to expand their knowledge management program.

My grant is part of the Fulbright Specialist Program, which promotes linkages between U.S. scholars and professionals and their counterparts at host institutions overseas.  The program is administered by  the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, who describe it as “the program awards grants to U.S. faculty and professionals approved to join the Specialist Roster in select disciplines to engage in short-term collaborative projects at eligible institutions in over 140 countries worldwide. Shorter grant lengths give Specialists greater flexibility to pursue projects that work best with their current academic or professional commitments.” In my case, the short-term feature was particularly appealing, especially when compared to the Fulbright Core Program that often is one semester or two semesters in length.

I must admit that when I applied for the program I was not very confident that I would be accepted.  I thought applying would be a good experience and that I might learn enough to be successful in a future application.  That was 26 months ago and now I about to start the adventure.  It has been a long journey already – full of bureaucracy, deadlines, highs and lows – but none of that matters now 🙂

I will be chronicling my participation here.