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Fulbright Scholar Grants Awarded to Two Keene State College Professors

June 19, 2012

International Program Welcomes Dr. Shirley McLoughlin and Dr. Deborah Merchant of Keene State's Education Department

Keene, NH, June 19, 2012: Two Keene State College education department faculty members have been awarded Fulbright Scholar Grants for 2012 and 2013. Dr. Shirley McLoughlin, Keene State Associate Professor of Education, and Dr. Deborah Merchant, Keene State Associate Professor of Education applied and were selected based on their credentials, professional experience and topic areas of interest. The Fulbright Scholar Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, and administered by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars. Each year about 800 faculty and professionals in the United States visit 140 countries to share their knowledge, form connections and conduct research. This recognition makes Keene State College a top producer of Fulbright Scholars among institutions of its type and size offering primarily baccalaureate programs.

As Fulbright Scholar, Dr. McLoughlin will reside in the Republic of Georgia beginning in February 2013, until June 2013. She expects to teach two to three courses while in Georgia; one on curriculum theory and development, one on educational leadership, and/or one on teaching methodologies for educators of elementary aged students ages five -12. She will also advise students while there.

"I am grateful and honored to have the chance to pursue my passion - collaboration with other cultures to gain insight into how education has developed and influences students today," said Dr. Shirley McLoughlin. "Education often teaches the dominant society's take on things. I'll be teaching and conducting some research on how the history and culture of Georgia has shaped education there. It will be exciting to share what I learn with others here in our country."

Beginning in October 2012, through December 2012, Dr. Merchant will be living and working in Greece. As Fulbright Scholar at the University of Macedonia, she will conduct research that will support the development of a curriculum for training secondary special educators in Greece in the area of self- determination and transition planning for students with intellectual disabilities. She also expects to teach a seminar for Master's level students in special education that addresses the skills and needs of students with intellectual disabilities, self-determination and transition.

"I am honored to be selected for this prestigious opportunity. My goal is to gain and share knowledge and ideas on how to understand the nature of the strengths and challenges that students with intellectual disabilities face, and what it means for their lives as they go out into the world of work and life after school," said Dr. Deborah Merchant. "The United States is ahead of most countries in special education and helping students with intellectual disabilities make these transitions. I believe that special education programs in Greece and the United States will benefit from exchanging information through the Fulbright Scholar Program."

"These selections are a demonstration of the academic excellence achieved at Keene State College. This exchange of knowledge and experience across international borders will benefit Keene State as well as the academic communities in Greece and the Republic of Georgia," said Keene State College Interim Provost, Melinda Treadwell. "I congratulate Dr. Merchant and Dr. McLoughlin on this important accomplishment. Keene State College will continue to offer its intellectual capital through the Fulbright Scholar Program for years to come."

For more information about the Fulbright Scholar Program, visit http://www.cies.org/About.htm.

About Keene State College

Keene State College is a preeminent public liberal arts college that ensures student access to world-class academic programs. Integrating academics with real-world application and active community and civic engagement, Keene State College prepares graduates to meet society's challenges by thinking critically, acting creatively, and serving the greater good. To learn more about Keene State College, visit www.keene.edu.

Keene State College: Wisdom to make a difference.