Three faculty earn Fulbright awards

Russ Rhoads, left, and Jerry Scripps received Fulbright Scholar awards.
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Russ Rhoads, left, and Jerry Scripps received Fulbright Scholar awards.
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Three Grand Valley faculty members were named Fulbright Scholars for the 2014-2015 academic year.

Charles Baker-Clark, associate professor of hospitality and tourism management, will teach in Montenegro; Russ Rhoads, associate professor of anthropology, in Sierra Leone; and Jerry Scripps, assistant professor of computing and information systems, in Graz, Austria.

This is the second straight year Grand Valley has had three faculty receive Fulbright awards. Last year the university tied for first place among master’s-degree institutions for number of Fulbright Scholars, according to a list from the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Scripps will be teaching at an Austrian technical school, which has a master’-level program, but said his Grand Valley students will benefit from his time abroad as well.

“I will be teaching data mining, which will strengthen my knowledge of the subject,” he said, “and also cloud computing, which I envision becoming part of the curriculum at Grand Valley soon.”

During his time at Njala University in Sierra Leone, Rhoads will work with social science faculty and students on community engagement projects.

“My collaborations with Njala will help students develop a toolkit of practical career skills and understand local communities and NGOs working locally, applying their fields of study,” he said.

Baker-Clark hopes to create a new HTM section of an existing course, International Cuisine and Culture, that focuses on the food and cultures of the emerging nations of the Balkans.
 
“The impact of my work as a Fulbright Scholar will not be limited on learners at Grand Valley,” he said. “I hope to work with faculty who plan international activities.”