An introductory session for the Fulbright Visiting Scholar program took place on Thursday October 13th, on Université Antonine’s Baabda campus, to brief the interested professors about the details and application process.
The Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program is sponsored by the US Department of State through its’ Embassy in Lebanon. Each year some 800 faculty and professionals from around the world receive Fulbright Scholar grants for advanced research and university lecturing in the US. It has provided tens of thousands of scholars with the opportunity to establish professional contacts in their field and make long-lasting friendships with colleagues in the US; to develop collaborative research relationships with US scholars; and to enhance their scholarly publications and other contributions with research conducted in the US.
As Dr. Micheline GHATTAS, Vice-President for Innovation at Université Antonine explains, the mission of the Fulbright Visiting Scholar Program is to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries, while providing educational exchange experiences to a maximum number of individuals who could not afford such an opportunity. Fulbright Scholars serve as cultural ambassadors and should be prepared to speak about their countries, cultures and research to academic and community groups.
Unlike other programs, the Fulbright strictly elects one professor and offers the possibility for the selected candidate to teach in one of the most renowned universities, for a period of 3 to 10 months, depending on the number of years he has taught, and whether his PhD is already obtained or is still in process.
Dr. GHATTAS stresses on the fact that the Fulbright programs’ selection policy is quite strict and requires a thorough list of documents, but this life changing opportunity is worth the trouble; plus, plenty of time is given till the December 1st deadline. On a professional level, the Fulbright program builds a great reputation for the scholar while breaking his/her routine and exposing him/her to a new environment and other professors’ approaches. On a personal level, it challenges the candidate to open up, learn and grow, while giving the chance to discover other cultures and promoting his/her own.
Dr. GHATTAS puts her faith in Université Antonine’s staff who, she says, is of a younger crowd, compared to other universities in Lebanon; and is therefore more flexible and more open to new ideas and opportunities. She is available for assistance for those who wish to apply through Université Antonine and will gladly guide them through the process.
Those who wish to apply can do so on: https://lebanon.usembassy.gov/fulbrightvisiting.html or better, by contacting Dr. GHATTAS; Soon enough, Université Antonine’s new website will include the proper links so that professors and students can get all the needed information online, along with a list of announcements of all kinds of programs, scholarships and opportunities.
On another note, here is a reminder about the two other programs that were sent to faculty:
-The US Department of State’s MEPI – Leaders for Democracy Fellowship (LDF) program, which will take place from February 20th to May 20th, 2017. Deadline is October 31st, 2016. https://lebanon.usembassy.gov/ldf.html
- A Massive Online Open Course (MOOC) offered by Princeton University, followed by workshops at the US Embassy, around generating institutional change and making government work in hard places. Deadline is November 15th, 2016. https://lebanon.usembassy.gov/ldf.html
Last but not least, student programs, including the Fulbright Foreign Student Program will be announced around spring time and all the details will be posted on the new university website.
Best of luck to all applicants!