NIU is once again among a select group of nine higher institutions across the country to host the Fulbright Gateway Orientation. The solid positive feedback from last year’s program earned NIU a third consecutive invitation from the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs to host another orientation from Monday, Aug. 14 – Thursday, Aug. 17.
This year, 66 foreign Fulbright student grantees will spend three days on campus acquiring the skills necessary for successful academic and professional lives in the United States while also learning more about their roles and responsibilities as Fulbrighters.
“This being the third time that NIU is hosting, we are really glad to see how we have grown from strength to strength in running this special program. We look forward to welcoming another great group of students,” said Sim Chin Tissa, director of NIU’s International Student and Faculty Office (ISFO).
NIU will welcome 66 Fulbrighters from 40 countries to campus Tuesday, Aug. 15, for three busy days of presentations, workshops, breakout sessions, networking activities and uniquely Midwestern field trips. Among the 66 participants, two are enrolling at NIU. One is from Mozambique for her Master in Public Administration, while the other is from Ecuador for his doctorate degree in geography.
Executive Vice President and Provost Chris McCord and NIU Graduate School Dean Brad Bond will deliver the official welcome Tuesday morning to open the orientation.
“It’s a great compliment to NIU faculty and staff, especially the International Student and Faculty Office, that we have the opportunity to introduce Fulbright recipients to American culture generally and to the culture of American higher education particularly,” said Dean Bond.
Cassandra Many, global events project manager, and Sarah Bird, Fulbright advisor, from the Institute of International Education; and Shenandoah Sampson, a representative from the Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs will be in attendance at this orientation.
Topics for the three days include:
- U.S. academic culture
- U.S. politics and people
- cross-cultural understanding and awareness of ethnicity, race, gender, sexuality and more
- appropriate interpersonal relationships
- leadership skills
- volunteerism in the community
Presenters include professors from Engineering, Liberal Arts and Sciences, staff from Student Affairs, Affirmative Action and Equity Compliance, Office of Academic Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, and Stephan Packard of the Somme Prairie Grove Forest Preserve.
Field trips are planned to Millennium Park and Navy Pier. Participants also will enjoy a Chicago Architectural River Tour. They will have opportunities to meet and mingle with members of the local community, including DeKalb Mayor Jerry Smith and Mrs. Smith, and representatives of the Kishwaukee Sunrise Rotary Club.
As this Fulbright Gateway Orientation ends, the staff at the ISFO (as they did last year) will immediately jump into welcoming NIUs new international students to campus for orientation on Monday, Aug. 21.