Virginia University at Parkersburg
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Fifteen WVU Parkersburg faculty members to spend month in Bulgaria this summer.
Contact: Erik Bitterbaum, president of WVU Parkersburg, 304-424-8200 or Emily Lamb, associate professor of English/reading and project director, 304-372-6992.
Fifteen West Virginia University at Parkersburg faculty members will be spending their summer vacation in Bulgaria.
The college is the recipient of a $62,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Educationís Fulbright-Hays Program for a month-long project at the University of Rousse in Bulgaria.
The Parkersburg campus has 90 full-time faculty members. Its 15-member delegation to Bulgaria will be broadly representative of the college and its disciplines.
"This will change the landscape of our institution forever," said Erik Bitterbaum, president of WVU Parkersburg.
"Imagine the impact of having one in six of our faculty participating in this program," he added. "We are delighted for the opportunity to increase global awareness in our part of West Virginia."
The project, titled "Short-Term Studies in Bulgaria," will focus on the artistic, historic, technological and pedagogical contributions of Bulgaria as well as on contemporary issues of economics, agriculture, politics and engineering, noted project director Emily Lamb. She also serves as the collegeís director of international studies.
"The project aims to provide opportunities for participating faculty to amplify and deepen the international component of our teacher preparation program and general education courses," Mrs. Lamb said, adding it will create a "worldview" curricular dimension.
The WVU Parkersburg group will leave the last week of June and return the third week of July. Participants will spend the first week in and near the city of Rousse in academic seminars and lectures on history, the local economy, and historical sites as well as classes in a variety of disciplines. The second week will include seminars and day trips to view displays of various Bulgarian art forms. The third week will be spent in the Black Sea coastal regions of Bulgaria, especially Varna, Borgas and the surrounding areas. Finally, the fourth week will be divided between the capitol city of Sofia and several day trips outside the city into the mountains and villages nearby.
As a result of the project, college officials hope to establish a faculty exchange program between WVU Parkersburg and the University of Rousse in the future.
The Fulbright-Hays Program awards grants to institutions of higher education, state departments of education and private nonprofit educational organizations. The purpose of the program is to provide training opportunities in foreign countries where the United States has diplomatic representation. Awards are made to conduct overseas group projects in curriculum development, research and training.
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