In 2009-2010 as the result of the U.S.-Russia Bilateral Presidential Commission’s Working Group on Education, Culture, Sports and Media, a number of educational and cultural exchange programs were reviewed and reinvigorated. The Fulbright Community College Administrators Seminar (CCAS) is a unique outcome, capping years of work to expand the Scholar Program’s outreach to and impact on American community colleges and technical schools.
CCAS was launched in 2010 and brings senior American community college administrators to Russia for meetings and events with their Russian counterparts. The Fulbrighters learn about the Russian higher education system, including reforms that created a new system of special status, federal, and national research universities. They also examine changes in professional education as well as efforts to solve labor issues through collaboration between schools, colleges, professional training centers, universities, and employers. Because Fulbright community college fellows understand both professional and higher education in the United States, they have a wealth of information and experience to share with their Russian counterparts. And due to the significant reforms taking place in Russia and the scale at which these reforms are being implemented, the Russian hosts also have much to share with their American colleagues. Fulbright grantees have participated in higher education conferences, met with representatives of the US Chamber of Commerce in Russia, the US Embassy in Moscow, the Ministry of Education and Science of Russia, and other federal and regional officials, and have been received at the US Embassy in Moscow.
The Community College Administrator grantees also travel to cities across Russia to see, first hand, the institutions and classrooms that they have been studying in Moscow. Accompanied by Russian and American Fulbrighters, they have a unique opportunity to experience Russia, its citizens, and its culture. In the last three years grantees have visited Astrakhan, Belgorod, Chelyabinsk, Ivanovo, Kazan, Krasnodar, Kurgan, Perm, Sochi, Tolyatti, Tula, Tyumen, Ufa, Volgograd, and Voronezh. Host cities are carefully selected based on the individual participants’ home institutions and priorities.
Deans, Vice Presidents, Executive Vice Presidents, Presidents, and other administrators have all become alumni of the CCAS.