A faculty member in Shenandoah University’s School of Education & Leadership (SEL) is in a position to bring her expertise to host institutions in varying locations around the world after being added recently to the Fulbright Specialist Program roster.
Associate Professor and Chair of Curriculum and Instruction Karrin Lukacs, Ph.D., is now on the roster of the specialist program, which connects highly qualified academics and professionals from the United States with host institutions in more than 150 countries and other areas. Those selected for the specialist roster are chosen “based on their knowledge, skill sets, and ability to make a significant contribution to projects overseas,” according to the Fulbright website. They “serve as expert consultants on curriculum, faculty development, institutional planning, and related subjects at academic institutions abroad for a period of two to six weeks.” The specialist program, which is part of the larger Fulbright Program, was established in 2001.
An On-Call Scholar
Those on the roster provide short-term, on-demand assistance to host institutions. “Specialists are strongly encouraged to continue to work with host institutions in the years following their initial exchange, creating opportunities for ongoing cooperation and consultancies,” the website states.
“My application was reviewed by a panel of three reviewers, who were looking specifically at my professional qualifications, suitability for specialist grant activity, cross-cultural communication skills and adaptability, potential to contribute to a host institution abroad and the advancement of knowledge in teacher education, and personal qualities such as professionalism and temperament,” said Dr. Lukacs.
She will have anywhere from one to three months of lead time before traveling to work with an international host institution on a project of their choice. “The project might be a professional development workshop, program evaluation, or research study,” she added. Lukacs will remain on the roster for three years.
A Privilege For A Distinguished Teacher Educator
“It is a privilege to be selected for this honor, and I am thankful for the support I have received from the School of Education & Leadership and Shenandoah University leadership to pursue opportunities like this one. I love teaching and learning, so I am very excited at the prospect of sharing my love of these with others from around the world,” Lukacs said.
Lukacs is thrilled and excited for the opportunities offered through the specialist program, and her selection is unsurprising to her colleagues at SEL. “Dr. Karrin Lukacs is a scholar-practitioner who is passionate about social justice, transformative practices, and collaboration in essential components of professional learning,” said School of Education & Leadership Director Jill L. Lindsey, Ph.D. “She is a true lifelong learner, who creates transformative learning experiences that better prepare future teachers to be engaging practitioners and passionate advocates for civility and restorative justice in their own classrooms. Dr. Lukacs is avidly curious about innovative, transformative digital pedagogies as exemplified by her selection as an Apple Distinguished Educator Program in 2017 – the only teacher educator in Virginia to achieve this distinction. The SEL faculty and I are honored to have Karrin as our colleague.”
A Great Fulbright Year
The year has been a good one for connections between Shenandoah University and the Fulbright Program, with both global studies/Spanish alumna Niulka Franco Marin ’17 and music education major Drake Stoughton ’18 receiving Fulbright Awards for the 2018-19 year.