Four faculty receive Fulbright Scholar awards, including one Distinguished Scholar Award

Contact: Deanne Puca

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Four Western Michigan University faculty members received highly competitive Fulbright Scholar awards—including a Distinguished Scholar Award that is one of only 38 offered globally for the 2022-23 cycle—to build lasting educational connections between the people of the United States and other countries.

Dr. Chansheng He

Dr. Chansheng He is the recipient of the Fulbright University of Leeds Distinguished Scholar Award, one of only 38 Distinguished Scholar Awards granted globally out of more than 440 Fulbright Scholar awards for next fiscal year. A professor of geography, environment and tourism and a Distinguished Faculty Scholar, He will spend six months at Leeds University in the United Kingdom, particularly at the Water Center, one of the largest interdisciplinary centers for water research at any university in the world. His research has looked at the interactions between human, socioeconomic, ecologic, geomorphic and hydrological systems that affect the water cycles in a river basin and using that information to address the global water supply crisis.

He will interact and work with more than 170 professionals from across the different departments and faculties of the University of Leeds to test, discuss, debate, revise and advance the watershed science framework he and his colleagues have proposed; brainstorm and seek out-of-the-box approaches to support participatory policy and decision making; and compare and analyze the water resources policies between the U.K. and the U.S.

Fulbright Scholars

Dr. D. Eric Archer

Three other Western faculty members also will take their expertise to institutions across the globe as Fulbright Scholars during the next academic year: Drs. D. Eric Archer, Sandra Borden and Shannon McMorrow. The 2022-23 cycle marks the largest number of Fulbright recipients from Western since 2016-17.

Dr. D. Eric Archer

Archer, associate professor of higher education leadership, will travel to Albania to help support the development and implementation of a comprehensive internationalization plan for the public higher education sector in Albania. That plan includes integrating global perspectives throughout teaching, research and service in higher education. 

"Albania has worked hard to improve the quality of its higher education system as it looks toward its eventual goal of joining the European Union, and I feel privileged to be able to be a part of supporting these efforts. In addition, I am excited to explore a country and culture that remains mostly unknown to the vast majority of Americans," says Archer.

Dr. Sandra Borden

Dr. Sandra Borden

Borden, professor in the School of Communication and director of the Center for the Study of Ethics in Society, will be traveling to the University of Navarre in Spain to conduct research for a project titled “Better Concepts for Better Ethics: Toward Journalism that Promotes Flourishing.” She and colleague Mónica Codina will jump-start an international research collaboration for retheorizing journalism’s ethical responsibilities in Western democracies in light of emerging political, social and technological realities. These include changes in the practices of journalists and news consumers and increased political polarization.

The scholars will rework core concepts in journalism ethics including truth, community and the public, taking into account how these concepts are embodied in different national contexts.

“This award will give us a chance to put our separate bodies of work in dialogue with each other and to set a long-range research agenda centered on our common interests,” says Borden. “I'm so excited for this opportunity to work with Mónica and to represent Western as a Fulbright Scholar.”

Dr. Shannon McMorrow

Dr. Shannon McMorrow

McMorrow, assistant professor of interdisciplinary health programs, will travel to Uganda to conduct research and teach at the Makerere University School of Public Health from September 2022 through May 2023. Her teaching and research will expand critical public health knowledge and skills by teaching students, training faculty in online teaching and conducting photovoice research to generate powerful visual evidence to inform policies and programs for Congolese refugee women in Uganda.

"I lived in Uganda for three years prior to my doctoral studies and am so thrilled for the opportunity to return as a Fulbright Scholar, to bring along my husband and daughter to experience this special country," says McMorrow.

About the Fulbright Scholar Program

The flagship international exchange program sponsored by the U.S Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the program, which operates in more than 160 countries worldwide.

For more than 75 years, Fulbright award winners have addressed critical global issues in all disciplines, while building relationships, knowledge and leadership in support of the long-term interests of the United States. Fulbright alumni include several distinguished Western faculty.

More information is available on the Fulbright Scholar Program's website.

Consultation on choosing an award and assistance with putting together a competitive application is available from WMU Fulbright Scholar liaison Dr. Michelle Metro-Roland.

For more WMU news, arts and events, visit WMU News online.