by Edward J. Brantmeier, Ph. D.
Assistant Director—Center for Faculty Innovation, Assistant Professor—Learning, Technology, and Leadership Education
JMU Fulbright Campus Representative, Fulbright-Nehru Scholar, India 2009
James Madison University
The Fulbright Program provides a tremendous vehicle for internationalizing careers and for promoting mutual understanding between/among citizens of the United States and of other countries. Collaboration, community, coaching, and celebration—these are the promising practices of James Madison University’s approach to promoting the Fulbright Program on campus.
Collaboration: The Office of International Programs, the Center for Faculty Innovation, and the Office of Diversity at James Madison University work together to provide faculty necessary support for enhancing their career goals in research, teaching, and service. This collaborative approach sends a powerful message about University support for the Fulbright Program. This support includes hosting events to build community, Fulbright coaching services for interested faculty, and celebrations that honor past Fulbrighters.
Community: Periodic information sessions at annual on-campus conferences as well as visits from Fulbright Alumni Ambassadors, coupled with celebratory events (most recently hosted by the Provost and President) help highlight the Fulbright Program to the university community. These festive convenings help Fulbright to gain a deserved high profile status on campus; they show faculty that the University cares about this prestigious award. Past Fulbrighters mingle with potential Fulbrighters—networks and community are generated.
Coaching: Interested faculty and administers can reach out to the Center for Faculty Innovation to strategically plan their Fulbright and request coaching assistance. Fulbright information sessions and application writing sessions are offered in the spring. Potential Fulbrighters can also request individual consultations through the Center for Faculty Innovation.
Celebration: Don’t forget to celebrate. Former Fulbrighters earn web-recognition on a JMU Voices of Fulbright website, as well as opportunities to speak about their experiences in Voices of Fulbright scholarly talks during the semester. We celebrate and showcase the work of our Fulbrighters—a win-win for JMU and the Fulbright Program.