Alexandra Frankel Receives Fulbright Award to Turkey
July 25, 2011
St. Paul, Minn. – Alexandra Frankel, of Milwaukee, Wis., has been awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarship to Turkey. Frankel graduated from Macalester College in 2009.
The Turkish Higher Education System (YÖK) recently established a number of new universities in central, southeastern and eastern Turkey. Frankel, who majored in Anthropology, will assist teaching conversational English and serve as cultural interpreter of the United States for Turkish students and colleagues at Afyon Kocatepe University in Afyonkarahisar, a small city several hours southwest of Ankara, Turkey.
“I am very excited to return to Turkey, a country I visited for the first time last year, though I grew up with my father's stories of the villages by the Black Sea from his time in the Peace Corps,” said Frankel. “Returning will be an exploration of both my father’s memories and my own narrative. Since graduating from Macalester I served as an AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer working with St. Stephen’s Human Services in Minneapolis. The Fulbright ETA means that I will have the opportunity to continue service in some capacity but also to return to an academic setting.”
The Fulbright U.S. Student Program offers fellowships for U.S. graduating seniors, graduate students, young professionals and artists to study abroad for one academic year. The Program also includes the English Teaching Assistant component.
Frankel plans to study the Turkish concept of gurbet which she discovered while a student at Macalester.
“Through the teaching assistantship I will have the opportunity to pursue my own research with the Turkish concept gurbet, which roughly translated refers to the state of being in exile,” said Frankel. “I am particularly interested how gurbet informs the construction of both identity and memory, especially through visual culture. I will also be studying Turkish.”
Frankel was among 50 students awarded English Teaching Assistantships this year to Turkey. The Fulbright Commission sought "adventurous, well-rounded applicants" to assist in teaching conversational English and to help explain the United States to students in these "new pioneering universities," who have little contextual understanding of American society and culture.
Frankel’s sure her time in Turkey will impact her future studies.
“I plan to pursue graduate study in Peace Studies and Near East Studies and have no doubt that my time in Turkey as a Fulbright ETA will play an invaluable role.”
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. The Fulbright Program operates in more than 155 countries worldwide.
Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program has given approximately 300,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and scientists the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.
Macalester College, founded in 1874, is a national liberal arts college with a full-time enrollment of 1,985 students. Macalester is nationally recognized for its long-standing commitment to academic excellence, internationalism, multiculturalism and civic engagement. Learn more at macalester.edu