WIUM Tristates Public Radio

Three More Fulbright Scholars at WIU

Jun 14, 2013

Three Western Illinois University professors have been selected to teach abroad as Fulbright lecturers.

Tim Roberts will teach American History at Zhejiang University in Hangzhou, a city 600 miles south of Beijing, near Shanghai.

Be careful what you ask for, is the lesson of the Fulbright program
American History Professor Tim Roberts will travel to China as a Fulbright Scholar.
Credit WIU

He said that he really didn't know until recently where exactly he would teach. So now, he and his family are scrambling to get everything in order.

That includes finding someone to take care of their dog and rent out their house, and figuring out what bank to use in China.

"Be careful what you ask for, is the lesson of the Fulbright program," Roberts joked.

Roberts is going to teach at Zhejiang for two semesters and is bringing along his family, including his two ten year old children. He said that they are a bit less enthusiastic about the trip than he is.

He said part of the process has been finding an international school for them. They also have been studying Chinese and their grandfather gave them a book on China.

WIU Business Management Professor will teach in Romania as a Fulbright Scholar.

"My son's really excited about the speed trains in China, so as long as they have speed trains he'll go anywhere." Roberts said.

Joe Dobson will teach Business Management Babeș-Bolyai University in Romania. He says that he actually decided to teach there for before he was accepted as Fulbright Scholar.

He said he met someone from Romania who actually got him touch with the University and he ended up getting a letter of recommendation from the institution. Along with that came a message that told him they couldn't actually pay him for the position.

The school recommended that he apply for  a Fulbright.

"If I had time to think about it I probably wouldn't have applied because I'm not what you would think of as a Fulbright Scholar," Dobson said.

Dobson said he's looking forward to the experience and is getting ready for the different atmosphere at Babeș-Bolyai University. A WIU student who's originally from Romania told Dobson that students dress much more formally than at American Universities.

"She looked around our hallway and said they would never dress like this," Dobson said with a grin, recounting a conversation they had.

Roberts who will teach early American history said he's looking forward to teach that period of the county's history to students who bring a different perspective to the material.

"I think it's cool to think about the US as a foreign country, and to not make so many assumptions," Roberts said.

WIU Associate English Professor Daniel Malachuk was also selected by the Fulbright program. He will be teaching in Germany this fall.