By Lucas Johnson
NASHVILLE, TN (TSU News Service) — Tennessee State University has been named a Fulbright Historically Black College and University (HBCU) Institutional Leader for the 2019-2020 academic year. For the second consecutive year, the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) is recognizing the noteworthy engagement that selected HBCUs have achieved with the Fulbright Program, the U.S. government’s flagship international educational exchange program. TSU has been named one of 20 HBCUs to receive this distinction.
Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leader status has been conferred on this group of 20 HBCUs, including TSU, because they have demonstrated noteworthy support for Fulbright exchange participants during the 2019-2020 academic year and have promoted Fulbright program opportunities on campus.
ECA established the HBCU Institutional Leader designation in 2019 to recognize the strong partnerships between the Fulbright Program and HBCUs, and to encourage the entire network of HBCUs to increase its engagement with Fulbright. This initiative is part of the U.S. Department of State’s long-standing commitment to build diversity and inclusion within the Fulbright Program and within all of the Bureau’s international exchange programs.
“TSU is honored to be recognized as a Fulbright HBCU Institutional Leader. Our exceptional students, staff, and faculty are key contributors to the program,” said Dr. Michael Harris, Interim Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs at TSU.
“The University values the exchange of cultural, educational, and practical experiences gained from engaging in the Fulbright programs. In our increasingly global society, our students and faculty are enriched with opportunities to increase and enhance the curricular and co-curricular benefits of the program and the core values it builds upon at TSU. The historic legacy of TSU and its international partners continues to guide our academic excellence across campus.”
Acting Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Matthew Lussenhop praised the designated institutions, stating, “Congratulations to this year’s 20 Fulbright Historically Black College and University Institutional Leaders. We salute you and your institutions for your engagement with the Fulbright Program, and for your commitment to providing life-changing opportunities to students, faculty, and administrators. HBCU participation is critical to fully representing the diversity of the United States through the Fulbright Program. Fulbrighters from HBCUs carry their identities and school pride with them abroad, allowing people from other countries to learn about these accomplished individuals and about this dynamic group of American institutions and their distinguished legacy. Foreign Fulbrighters hosted by an HBCU return home with new knowledge, an appreciation of the United States, and a broadened perspective on America.”
TSU Professors Janice Williams and John Miglietta are recent Fulbright Scholar Award recipients and will be representing the University abroad. Williams will use the award to continue lecturing in the dental therapy program at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and University of the Western Cape in South Africa as part of a project to teach students and train faculty on the integration of hybrid and online learning curriculum. Miglietta will be teaching political science at the University of Central Asia, Khorog campus in Khorog, Tajikistan.
The Fulbright Exchange Program is the U.S. Government’s premier international academic exchange program. A hallmark of the Fulbright Program has been its longstanding commitment to diversity, striving to ensure that its participants reflect U.S. society and societies abroad. The Program’s robust diversity strategies and initiatives have included collaboration with a host of diversity-related associations and organizations such as the White House Initiative on HBCUs, the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, the National Clearinghouse on Disability and Exchange, the American Association of Community Colleges, Diversity Abroad, as well as a host of others. The Fulbright Program also works with diversity-focused media and is engaged with hundreds of minority serving institutions and other diverse colleges and universities. The Program is keenly aware that its efforts to increase and enhance diversity must be coupled with inclusion and has taken various measures to help ensure that its diverse grantees have successful and rewarding exchange experiences abroad.
Fulbright is active in more than 160 countries worldwide and partners with participating governments, host institutions, corporations, and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States. Many of these organizations also provide direct and indirect support. ECA sponsors the Fulbright program, and several non-profit, cooperative partners implement and support the program on the Bureau’s behalf.
For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State, please visit http://eca.state.gov/fulbright or contact the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Press Office by e-mail ECA-Press@state.gov.