The United States Embassy in Uruguay is pleased to announce the Study of the United States Institutes Summer 2016 for Scholars and Secondary School Educators. The program is designed as a rigorous five/six-week faculty level seminar hosted at U.S. universities for multinational professional groups (see eligibility criteria below) that will take place in June/July 2016.
The purpose of the institutes is to provide participants from countries worldwide with a deeper understanding of American society, education, culture, and institutions, past and present, in order to strengthen curricula and improve the quality of teaching about the U.S. in college, university, and secondary school classrooms abroad.
Institute Description and Goals:
Study of the United States Institutes are intensive post-graduate level academic programs with integrated study tours whose purpose is to provide foreign university faculty, other scholars and secondary school educators the opportunity to deepen their understanding of American society, education, culture, and institutions, past and present. The ultimate goal is to strengthen curricula and to improve the quality of teaching about the United States in college, university, and secondary school classrooms abroad.
This year seven institute programs are offered:
- U.S. Culture and Society (Scholar Nomination Form)
- U.S. Political Thought (Scholar Nomination Form)
- Contemporary American Literature (Scholar Nomination Form)
- U.S. Foreign Policy (Scholar Nomination Form)
- Journalism and Media (Scholar Nomination Form)
- Religious Pluralism in the U.S. (Scholar Nomination Form)
- Institute for Secondary School Educators (Secondary Educator Form)
The institutes will take place at various colleges and universities throughout the United States over the course of five to six weeks beginning in June/July 2016.
You are encouraged to visit the Exchanges.state.gov website to obtain general information about the Institutes:
A. SUSI on U.S. Political Thought will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced foreign university faculty and practitioners with a deeper understanding of major currents in U.S. political thought from the colonial period to the present. Drawing upon the American Political Development approach, the Institute will provide a full and diverse understanding of U.S. political thought its connection to U.S. politics and institutions by linking contemporary issues with historical debates. The Institute will explore particular themes including self-rule and limited government, liberty and freedom, individualism and identity, equality and inequality, and the American dream. The Institute concludes with an integrated two-week study tour to Boston, New York City, Gettysburg, Charlottesville, and Washington, D.C. Host institution to be determined.
B. SUSI on Contemporary American Literature will provide a multinational group of up to 18 foreign university faculty and scholars with a deeper understanding of U.S. society and culture, past and present, through an examination of contemporary American (U.S.) literature. Its purpose is twofold: to explore contemporary American writers and writing in a variety of genres; and to suggest how the themes explored in those works reflect larger currents within contemporary U.S. society and culture. The program will explore the diversity of the American literary landscape, examining how major contemporary writers, schools, and movements reflect the traditions of the U.S. literary canon. At the same time, the program will expose participants to writers who represent a departure from that tradition, and who are establishing new directions for American literature. Host institution to be determined.
C. SUSI on Journalism and Media will provide a multinational group of 18 journalism instructors and other related specialists with a deeper understanding of the roles that journalism and the media play in U.S. society. The Institute will examine the rights and responsibilities of the media in a democratic society, including editorial independence, journalistic ethics, legal constraints, international journalism, and media business models. The Institute will examine pedagogical strategies for teaching students of journalism the basics of the tradecraft: researching, reporting, writing, and editing. The program will also highlight the impact of technology on journalism, such as the influence of the Internet, the globalization of the news media, the growth of satellite television and radio networks, and other changes that are transforming the profession. Host institution to be determined.
D. SUSI on Religious Pluralism in the United States will provide a multinational group of up to 18 foreign university faculty and practitioners with a deeper understanding of U.S. society and culture, past and present, through an examination of religious pluralism in the United States and its intersection with American democracy. Employing a multi-disciplinary approach and drawing on fields such as history, political science, sociology, anthropology, law, and others, the program will explore both the historical and contemporary relationship between church and state in the United States. Participants will examine the following aspects of religious pluralism in the United States: the ways in which religious thought and practice have influenced, and been influenced by, the development of American-style democracy; the intersections of religion and politics in the United States in such areas as elections, public policy, and foreign policy; and the sociology and demography of religion in the United States today, including a survey of the diversity of contemporary religious beliefs and its impact on American politics and society. Host institution to be determined.
E. The Study of the U.S. Institute on U.S. Culture and Society will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced and highly-motivated foreign university faculty and other specialists with a deeper understanding of U.S. society, culture, values, and institutions. The Institute will examine the ethnic, racial, social, economic, political, and religious contexts in which various cultures have manifested in U.S. society while focusing on the ways in which these cultures have influenced social movements and American identity throughout U.S. history. The program will draw from a diverse disciplinary base, and will itself provide a model of how a foreign university might approach the study of U.S. culture and society. Host institution to be determined.
F. SUSI on U.S. Foreign Policy will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced foreign university faculty and practitioners with a deeper understanding of how contemporary U.S. foreign policy is formulated and implemented. The Institute will include a historical review of significant events, individuals, and philosophies that have shaped U.S. foreign policy. The Institute will explain the role of key players in U.S. foreign policy including the executive and legislative branches of government, the media, the U.S. public, think-tanks, non-governmental organizations, and multilateral institutions. Host institution to be determined.
G. SUSI for Secondary School Educators The Study of the United States Institutes for Secondary School Educators will provide three multinational groups of 30 secondary educators each with a deeper understanding of U.S. society, education, and culture, past and present. This Institute is for secondary school teachers, teacher trainers, curriculum developers, textbook writers, ministry of education officials, secondary school administrators, or other related professionals with responsibility for secondary education. The programs will be organized around a central theme or themes in U.S. studies and will have a strong contemporary component. Through a combination of traditional, multi-disciplinary, and interdisciplinary approaches, the programs will elucidate the history and evolution of U.S. educational institutions and values. Priority will be given to candidates who have firm plans to enhance, update or develop courses and/or educational materials with a U.S. studies focus or component, who have no prior or limited experience in the United States, and who have special interest in the institute topic. Host institution to be determined.
Other Essential Program Information
The U.S. State Department will cover all participant costs, including: program administration; international and domestic travel and ground transportation; book, cultural, housing and subsistence, mailing, and incidental allowances.
Housing and Meal Arrangements
Typically, participants will have a private room with a shared bathroom during the residency portion (four weeks) of the institute, and will have to share a hotel room during the study tour (up to two weeks). Housing will typically be in college or university owned housing. Most meals will be provided at campus facilities, though participants may have access to a kitchen to cook some meals on their own. Full details will be provided if the grants are approved. It is important that the applicants are comfortable with such housing arrangements, particularly sharing a room with another participant.
Care will be taken to ensure that any special requirements regarding diet, daily worship, and medical care are satisfied.
All participants will receive the Department of States coverage of $100,000 with a $ 25 co-pay per office visit for the duration of the program. Pre-existing conditions are not covered.
Program Requirements and Restrictions
Participants are expected to participate fully in the program. They are expected to attend all lectures and organized activities, and complete assigned readings. Family members and/or friends cannot accompany participants on any part of the program. Please note that teaching methodology and pedagogical methods will not be addressed formally in the institute. Candidates should be made aware that they are applying for an intensive institute and there will be little time for personal pursuits unrelated to the program. The institute should not be viewed as a research program.
Candidate Description and qualifications
- Candidates should be mid-career, typically between the ages of 30-50, highly-motivated and experienced professionals from institutions of higher education or research focused organizations (not for-profits, think tanks, etc.). While the educational level of participants will likely vary, most should have graduate degrees and have substantial knowledge of the thematic area of the Institute or a related field.
- The ideal candidates are individuals whose home institution is seeking to introduce aspects of U.S. studies into its curricula, to develop new courses in the subject of the Institute, to enhance and update existing courses on the United States, or to offer specialized seminars/workshops for professionals in U.S. studies areas related to the program theme. While the nominee’s scholarly and professional credentials are an important consideration, the potential impact and multiplier effect of the Institute is equally important. Ideal candidates will have little or no prior experience in the United States.
- Candidates should be willing and able to fully take part in an intensive post-graduate level academic program and study tour. While senior faculty members are eligible applicants, we urge universities to give first consideration to younger and mid-career professionals, and to persons who are likely to be comfortable with campus life and an active program schedule.
- Candidates must demonstrate English language fluency. Institutes are rigorous and demanding programs; participants will be expected to handle substantial reading assignments in English and to fully and actively participate in all seminar and panel discussions.
Other Factors for Consideration
U.S. Embassy Montevideo will select one participant per institute to send to Washington as a candidate. Please be advised that the Study of the United States Institutes are highly competitive, therefore we cannot guarantee a slot for a Uruguayan candidate in each institute. Slots are fully pending on consistent justification arguments and on the position and background information of each candidate on their respective universities (these information must be clear when filling the application).
Nominations will be reviewed by the U.S Embassy in Montevideo to select one candidate per institute and by the Branch staff in the State Department in Washington for final candidate’s approvals. The Embassy will conduct skype interviews with candidates on January and will notify candidates regarding their selection or non-selection by March 2016.
The following factors will be used in selecting participants from among the nominations.
The Department of State and the U.S. Embassy in Montevideo would like to emphasize that the clarity with which each candidate and their applications address each of these factors strongly affects a candidate’s chance of selection.
- U.S Embassy Justification: The justification statement of the Embassy in Montevideo is a critical portion of the nomination, as it offers the Embassy the opportunity to provide Washington with specific reasons why the participation of a nominee is particularly desirable in terms of enhancing the study of the United States at the home institution, or more broadly, in the home country, while competing with other nominees from all over the world. We request each candidate in their justification portion of the application, to provide the Embassy with the following information in order for us to write a strong justification: would the nomination serve to strengthen an already established faculty, or is it intended to give a boost to a fledgling program? Is the nominee a leader within his or her field who is in a unique position to have a significant and immediate impact on curricular development, or is the nominee a younger professional with exceptional promise whose participation is likely to result in a substantial benefit to their home institution in the long run? Describe the role that the nominees play at their home institution. Why, in short, does the nomination matter?
This justification does not need to be especially lengthy (200 words), but it should be included in the letter of recommendation addressing these and any other relevant issues.
- Candidate Statement (essay): In order to get a better sense of potential participant’s motivations and goals, Washington requests that each candidate provide a short personal statement (250 words) indicating why he or she is interested in participating in the program and what he or she expects to get out of the experience. See paragraph 6, T below for more details.
- English Language Ability: It is imperative that all candidates demonstrate English language fluency. Institutes are rigorous and demanding programs; participants will be expected to handle substantial reading assignments in English and to be full and active participants in all seminar and panel discussions. English fluency is vital to a successful experience in the Institute, both for your participant and participants from other countries.
- Priority Consideration: Priority will be given to candidates who have firm plans to enhance, update or develop courses and/or educational materials with a U.S. studies focus or component, who have limited experience in the United States, and who have special interest in the program subject areas as demonstrated through past scholarship, accomplishments, and professional duties. In addition, Washington makes every effort to have both a geographic and gender balance in the makeup of the institute.
Nomination Format and Deadline
Candidates must complete and send the Application Form no later than Tuesday, December 22, 2015.
Applications received after the deadline will not be considered.
Educator Nomination: http://goo.gl/4FwY2
Scholar Nomination: http://goo.gl/wFmyB
Institutes and Forms
To apply for one of these Institutes:
- U.S. Culture and Society
- U.S. Political Thought
- Contemporary American Literature
- U.S. Foreign Policy
- Journalism and Media
- Religious Pluralism in the U.S.
Please use this form: Scholar Nomination Form
To apply for the Institute for Secondary School Educators
Please use this form: Secondary Educator Nomination Form
We look forward to receiving your nominations. Thank you.
Note: By applying for this program, you agree (if selected as a finalist or alternate) to have your name included in any official embassy publications including but not limited to: press releases, email notifications and the official embassy website, Facebook Page, Twitter feed, and YouTube site.