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UW Graduate Receives Student Fulbright Scholarship

September 21, 2011
UW graduate Robert Weatherford received a Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarship to teach at a school in Spain. (UW Photo)

By Hannah Wheeler, UW communications intern

Recent University of Wyoming graduate Robert Weatherford has been awarded a Fulbright U.S. Student Program scholarship to teach at a school in Spain.

Weatherford is teaching English as a second language at "Carmen Martin Gaite," a bilingual institute near Madrid, similar to an American high school. The institute is named after a famous 20th century Spanish author.

"We Fulbrighters have some extra responsibilities," Weatherford says. Those include instructing the teachers in English, giving frequent presentations about North American culture and lifestyle to the students and teachers, and running a program called "Global Classrooms" that is essentially a model United Nations program that gets the students thinking about international relations and teaches them the protocol of the UN.

"The other part of my Fulbright scholarship more or less just encourages me to create wholesome bonds with Spain and to represent the United States well, so we are encouraged to get very involved, to volunteer and to do things of the sort," he says.

Weatherford is one of more than 1,600 U.S. citizens who will travel abroad for the 2011-2012 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program. The flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government, the Fulbright Program is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries.

A 2011 UW graduate, Weatherford was named an outstanding graduate by the College of Arts and Sciences. For the honor, he was asked what he wanted to do with his new degree.

"I hope to become a professor of English or comparative literature and be an inspirational teacher and erudite scholar," he said in his biography.

While attending UW, Weatherford majored in Spanish and English. He was a speaker for the 2010 Keith and Thyra Thomson Honors Convocation and is a member of the UW Honors Program and Phi Beta Kappa.

Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Sen. 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.

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