Tulsa hosts international Fulbright Scholar seminar

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Visiting Fulbright Scholars explore the American West in Tulsa

Approximately 70 Fulbright Visiting Scholars from 40 countries are visiting northeastern Oklahoma this week as part of a Fulbright Enrichment Seminar – one of four such programs taking place in the United States during the 2013-14 academic year.

The Fulbright Visiting Scholar Enrichment Seminar, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, and administered by the Tulsa Global Alliance, The University of Tulsa and Gilcrease Museum, is exploring historic and contemporary perspectives on land and culture in the American West.

The program, titled “Old to New West: The Role of Land in Shaping the American Story,” presents a multifaceted and interdisciplinary exploration of changing perceptions about land and its use in the western United States.

In the 21st century, as more of the American and world populations become urban and fewer people have significant contact with the natural world, it is important to remind ourselves that it is the land and its resources that allow us to develop technology and urban ways of life. For two centuries, the American West has been the laboratory for changing perspectives of land use and stewardship; it still is, today.

“Old to New West” is being held at Gilcrease Museum and the Tall Grass Prairie near Pawhuska. The Fulbright Visiting Scholars participating in the program come from a wide variety of disciplines ranging from physics and music to economics and zoology. TU faculty members and experts from Gilcrease will lead many of the sessions during this seminar.

Other cities hosting Fulbright Visiting Scholars Seminars in 2013-14 are Austin, Texas; New Orleans; and Louisville, Ky. Topics at those sites will include diversity, justice and entrepreneurship.

The Fulbright Visiting Scholar Enrichment Program, sponsored by the State Department’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs and implemented by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, offers a variety of enrichment activities designed to enable scholars to better experience America and to further the Fulbright Program’s goal of increasing mutual understanding between the people of the U.S. and people of other countries.

Cheryl Matherly