Published 07/21/11

History professor fosters Fulbrights

Michael BryantSMITHFIELD, R.I.  (July 21, 2011) -- A Bryant University expert in human rights and international humanitarian law has been selected by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars to serve on the Law Peer Review Committee for the Fulbright Specialist Program.

Michael Bryant, associate professor of history and social sciences in the University's College of Arts and Sciences, will serve on the review committee through January 2012.

The Fulbright Specialist Program provides grants to qualified U.S. academics and professionals in a variety of disciplines to carry out short-term collaborations (two to six weeks) at higher education institutions in more than 100 countries. Eligible activities include lecturing, participation in special conferences or workshops, collaboration on curriculum planning, and institutional or faculty development.

As a member of the Law Peer Review Committee, Bryant is charged with reviewing applicants' proposals. Those that merit support are presented to the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board. Scholars admitted to the Specialist Program remain eligible for grants for five years.

"The overarching goal of the Fulbright program is to foster relationships and connections between the United States and the international community," said Bryant, who was a Fulbright Fellow at the University of Marburg, Germany, in 2009 and who currently is a Fulbright Senior Specialist in law. "Such relationships promote institutional cross-pollination and, in many cases, develop into further engagement with colleagues around the world."

For example, during his Fulbright fellowship at the University of Marburg, Bryant offered an American perspective while co-teaching comparative law seminars that explored genocide and crimes against humanity. "I was fascinated by the different perspectives the German students offered," he said. "The experience was meaningful, draining, exciting and productive."

Bryant is available to help his Bryant colleagues prepare grant applications for the various Fulbright programs. "I would love other Bryant faculty to have the same opportunities that I had," he said.

Other Bryant University faculty who have received grants through the various Fulbright programs include:

  • Roger Anderson, professor of management
  • Charles Cullinan, professor of accounting
  • Joseph Ilacqua, professor of economics
  • Alex Perullo, associate professor of anthropology
  • Christopher Roethlein, associate professor of management