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New Mexico State University

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NMSU receives grant for teachers to study in Brazil

New Mexico State University has received a $65,000 U.S. Department of Education grant to send 14 New Mexico educators to study in Brazil this summer.

gram is titled "The Brazilian Area Studies of The Pantanal Wilderness Area: An Intercultural Perspective of the Complex Interaction between Culture, Socio-Economics and Ecology."

The chosen educators will participate in the intensive, hands-on experience from May 29 to July 4, in the Corumba and Cuiba areas of the Brazilian Pantanal, the world's largest tropical wetland ecosystem.

Cross-cultural activities will be included in the curriculum and excursions around Rio de Janeiro, Manaus and Sao Paulo will allow participants to explore Brazilian culture, history, religion, geography and educational systems.

"This is a remarkable opportunity for educators to expand their horizons and submerge themselves in a different culture," said U.S. Senator Pete Domenici, who serves on the Senate Appropriations Committee, the primary source of funding for the program.

"It's not just the 14 educators who will be impacted by the program. They will have to develop a learning module on Brazil to use in their classes," said Ida Baca, the principle investigator for the grant. "This program is another tool to bring an international focus into the public school curriculum."

"NMSU continues to provide invaluable learning opportunities for students and educators alike and I am pleased that individuals from New Mexico have been selected to participate in this prestigious exchange program," Domenici said.

The program is part of the Fulbright-Hayes Group Project Abroad Program, which supports overseas programs in training, research and curriculum development in modern foreign languages and area studies for groups of teachers, students and faculty.

The Fulbright Program is administered by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, a division of the U.S. Department of State, and was established in 1946 as an educational exchange program under legislation introduced by Senator J. William Fulbright. The Fulbright Program has provided more than 230,000 participants with the opportunity to live and work in another political, economical and cultural context, exchange ideas and embark on joint ventures of importance to the general welfare of the world's inhabitants.

The program's goals include broadening and deepening professional or academic knowledge, studying or lecturing at renowned international universities, conducting collaborative research with foreign scholars, living in another culture for an extended period of time, developing lasting professional and personal ties and fostering a relationship between home and host institutions.

The program is open to New Mexico educators from grades K-12 and the deadline to apply is April 20.

For more information, contact Baca at (505) 646-4528 or via e-mail at ibaca@nmsu.edu.