Fulbright Scholars Part of Academic and Cultural Exchange Between SUNY Geneseo and University in Ghana

GENESEO, N.Y. - State University of New York at Geneseo professor Jennifer L. Rogalsky's selection as a Fulbright scholar for this semester has taken her to Ghana, where she will teach a course and conduct research on the role of gender in the developing world.

Rogalsky, associate professor of geography at Geneseo, is part of a new collaborative partnership between Geneseo and Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) in Kumasi, where she will teach "Gender and Development" in the Geography and Rural Development Department. The head of that department and vice dean of the faculty of Social Science at KNUST, Eva Tagoe-Darko, received a Fulbright grant for the entire academic year and is teaching and conducting research in Geneseo's geography department.

"This is a true academic and cultural exchange that will benefit students in Ghana and Geneseo," said Rogalsky, associate professor of geography at Geneseo. "I feel very honored and lucky to be a part of this program. "

In addition to teaching, Rogalsky will conduct gender research in Kumasi and Accra, Ghana, focusing on how women cope in the informal economy in urban markets.

"I plan to involve students and collaborate with KNUST faculty in my research," she said. "I expect to find that national policies such as the Ghana poverty reduction strategy, and growth and poverty reduction strategy are not ‘trickling down.' My findings could have policy implications to help women and their children address barriers to economic and educational success."

Tagoe-Darko taught a course on maternal education and child health the first semester at Geneseo and will teach a course on the geography of Africa this semester. She also will continue her research on identifying effective preventive health practices for children and adolescents.

"My experience here at Geneseo has been wonderful and I see this as the beginning of more collaboration between our institutions," said Tagoe-Darko. "There is great potential for more exchanges, not only with faculty but also students."

Rogalsky gives credit to the dean of Geneseo's School of Education, Osman Alawiye, for initiating the partnership between Geneseo and KNUST, which encouraged Rogalsky and Tagoe-Darko to apply for the Fulbright award. Livingston County officials also are pursuing trade opportunities with the country.

About 1,250 U.S. faculty and professionals received Fulbright scholar or Specialist awards to teach or conduct research abroad this year. A similar number of foreign scholars received Fulbright grants to visit the United States. Congress established the Fulbright program in 1946 under legislation introduced by then-Sen. J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. Since 1947, the program has awarded more than 50,000 grants to support teaching and research in countries around the world.

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