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Warner School awarded funding to host Fulbright Teachers for a second year

A teacher sitting with students in a library

The University of Rochester’s Warner School of Education and Human Development has received $260,000 in funding to continue hosting the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching Program for International Teachers. This marks the second consecutive year that the Warner School has been awarded funding for this esteemed program.

Rochester proudly stands as one of only two universities nationwide selected as a host institution for the program for the fall 2024 semester. Sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational & Cultural Affairs and implemented by the International Research and Exchanges Board, the program facilitates professional development opportunities for international primary and secondary teachers selected as Fulbright recipients in their respective home countries.

The program will bring 22 Fulbright Teachers from 13 countries to Rochester, where they will complete coursework at the University while collaborating with local educators through field experiences in schools or a community-based workplace setting. These visiting master teachers will also engage in research-based projects, attend seminars and explore regional and historical sites around Rochester. Partnering school districts for the program include the Rochester City School District, Brighton Central School DistrictRush–Henrietta Central School District and a Workplace English Program offered by the Warner School of Education.

The Fulbright Teachers, hailing from Bangladesh, Botswana, Brazil, Finland, Greece, India, Indonesia, Mexico, Morocco, the Philippines, Senegal, Singapore and Uganda, will be in Rochester from August 13 to December 11, enriching the Warner School’s community with their diverse backgrounds and expertise. 

Nicole King, assistant professor and director of the TESOL and world language programs, serves as the grant’s principal investigator and program director, with Hairong Shang-Butler, an associate professor and director of the International TESOL program, as a co-principal investigator and school-site coordinator.

“The Fulbright Program epitomizes international exchange, fostering mutual understanding and collaboration,” says King. “Participating in initiatives like Fulbright not only facilitates mutual learning but also underscores our commitment to equity-based educational practices. We remain grateful for the administrators, teachers and students at our partnering schools who have warmly welcomed and embraced our Fulbright Teachers and created opportunities for them to grow and engage with peers, students and their families.” 

To ensure a seamless transition and foster a sense of belonging, the Fulbright Teachers will be paired with University alumni and members of the Rochester community, referred to as “Friendship Families,” who will provide support and opportunities for cultural exchange. Warner School faculty will offer guidance and mentorship throughout the program, while local cooperating teachers facilitate connections with schools, engage participants in teaching opportunities and assist in the implementation of their research projects. 

The University’s International Services Office and Global Engagement will collaborate to facilitate cultural visits and fulfill the program’s goals and objectives.

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international exchange program, promoting mutual understanding and collaboration between the United States and other nations. In 2023, the Warner School hosted 17 international educators from around the world through this program. 

“The Fulbright participants are selected as exemplary educators in their countries, making this program mutually beneficial and essential to the glocal focus of the multilingual education programs at Warner,” King says. “These visiting master teachers gain invaluable experiences here, while our partnering schools and the Warner School community also benefit greatly from their expertise. We are honored to play a pivotal role in advancing these objectives and welcoming the Fulbright Teachers to our vibrant educational community.”