SIUE’s Weishaar Earns Prestigious Fulbright International Education Award



March 30, 2016

Southern Illinois University Edwardsville’s Executive Director of International Affairs Mary Konya Weishaar, PhD, is one of 10 higher education professionals in the U.S. selected for a Fulbright International Education Administrator Seminar award to Japan. The U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board present the award.

“The opportunity to engage with universities and other educational institutions in Japan is incredibly exciting,” said Weishaar. “Given my focus on facilitating international initiatives at SIUE and our keen interest in developing broad-based partnerships in the Pacific Rim, including Japan, this will only enhance our efforts.”

Weishaar will participate in a two-week group seminar in June, specifically designed to create and empower connections between U.S. higher education administrators and the societal, cultural and higher education systems of Japan.

The funded grant includes campus visits in Tokyo, Kyoto and Hiroshima and briefings with faculty and administration, government officials and leading educational experts, as well as tours of historical and cultural sites.

“My goal is to investigate creating specific programs that focus on collaboration with Japanese faculty, direct exchange of students and travel study in Japan,” Weishaar said. “SIUE’s vision includes providing programs that empower individuals to achieve their full potential. In order to do so, students must learn to engage in international experiential learning and work collaboratively with diverse populations.”

This is Weishaar’s second Fulbright award. Her first was a Senior Scholar award in Kiev, Ukraine in 2002.

About the Fulbright Program: The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The primary source of funding for the Fulbright Program is an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations and foundations in foreign countries and in the United States also provide direct and indirect support. Recipients of Fulbright grants are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement, as well as demonstrated leadership in their fields. The Program operates in over 160 countries worldwide.

Photo: Mary Konya Weishaar, PhD, SIUE executive director of International Affairs. Copyright Southern Illinois University Edwardsville 2016