Fulbright Scholar in Romania shines spotlight on WSU throughout Europe

Attending the 2018 Fulbright EU-NATO Seminar in Brussels and sharing herCourtney-Sophia Henry collegiate experience in urban Detroit with college-bound students in Bucharest, Fulbright Scholar Courtney-Sophia Henry (CLAS ’12) is a proud ambassador for her alma mater while teaching English to university students in Romania.

Both were unforeseen opportunities when she left to spend nine months as an English Teaching Assistant at Universitatea de Vest din Timisoara and Universitatea „Dunărea de Jos” din Galați.  She is honored that the Romanian-U.S. Fulbright Commission chose her for the events.

The Alumni Fair, organized with support of EducationUSA and the U.S. Embassy, gave her a chance to “sing the praises” of a university that supports international exchange through its Office of Study Abroad and Global Programs and a staff that nurtures the global aspirations of students across all disciplines.

And, in Henry’s case, helps a student fulfill a dream she’s had since middle school, when she first learned about the prestigious short- and long-term scholarships awarded annually to students, educators and professionals to teach and conduct research around the world.

Study Abroad Director Kelli Dixon, the university’s Fulbright liaison for student programs, assisted Henry in fine-tuning her Fulbright application, which entails essays, transcripts and letters of recommendation. With her from the moment the award was announced was Exchange Student Coordinator Lisa Kyle, with answers to travel-related questions regarding things like visas, insurance and logistics.

Courtney-Sophia Henry in Budapest“I truly cannot say enough about how helpful (that office has) been throughout my journey,” says Henry, who transferred to WSU from Alpena Community College to pursue her bachelor's with honors in linguistics and international studies.

Along the way, Henry participated in the Summer Service Learning in Rural China program sponsored by the WSU Confucius Institute, was a 2011 McNair Scholar and worked in the Study Abroad office.

After graduation, she was part of the 2013 Teach for America Corps in Washington, D.C., returning to Detroit as an instructor with the Community Arts Partnership until she left for Romania.

While there, part of her community outreach is visiting middle schools, high schools, clubs and organizations to share a slice of life in America. As a member of the Saginaw Chippewa (Ojibwe) tribe, she includes a unique perspective on the contemporary indigenous experience.

Henry wraps up her teaching assignments in May and has recieved a one-month extension to research the Romanian Revolution, having been granted access to archives at the Museum of the Romanian Revolution from 1989, located in Timişoara, where the revolution began.

Henry says the last year has been life-changing, and encourages students to explore the variety of study abroad programs the university offers. After she returns to the States in June, she wants to explore graduate programs abroad.

Fulbright, with more than 500 scholarship grants available, is accepting applications for the 2019-20 academic year.

For questions related to the Fulbright Student Program, contact Dixon at ab6179@wayne.edu  She is holding an informational meeting at 2 p.m. April 27 in Room 384 of the Student Center. For preliminary information, students may also visit http://us.fulbrightonline.org/

If you have received a Fulbright award, we want to know about it!  Email Carol Baldwin, communications coordinator for OIP, at carol.baldwin@wayne.edu and tell her about your experience.

The Office of International Programs leads Wayne State’s global engagement by creating opportunities that foster international education and research, facilitate the exchange of individuals and ideas that promote global competencies and citizenship, and provide resources that support the expansion of the university’s global agenda.

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