Two of the newest Fulbright U.S. Scholars are Bradley’s Cecile Arquette, professor of education, counseling and leadership, and Mathew Timm, professor of mathematics. Each will receive a stipend to live abroad for teaching, travel and research. While Arquette plans to spend the 2020–21 academic year teaching in Vietnam, Timm will be in Croatia performing research.
What made you decide to apply for the Fulbright award?
Arquette: I had such a positive experience living in Viña del Mar, Chile, in 2014 during my first Fulbright I decided to try for another.
Timm: It is the first time I have applied for one … My family’s schedule, the finances, and my professional qualifications I felt were all aligned appropriately for me to do a Fulbright.
Why did you choose your country?
Timm: I decided to focus my application on Croatia and the University of Split because my research credentials are more in line with the research interests of the faculty.
Arquette: I wanted to go to a part of the world I didn’t know much about and give myself a language and cultural challenge.
What will you do?
Arquette: I’ll be teaching future English teachers both ways to teach English and a diversity course about cultures in the United States at Phu Yen University in Tuy Hoa, a small city about the size of Peoria on the south-central coast.
Timm: My main research interests lie in the subdiscipline of topology known as geometric topology.
What do you hope to bring back from this experience?
Timm: I hope that my collaboration results in the production of some interesting mathematics.I also expect … I will learn things which I can bring back that will allow me and the university to better address the needs of our increasing diverse student population.
Arquette: I know I’ll develop new friendships with colleagues and students, and I should be able to bring back fresh ideas to my own Bradley students.
How does COVID-19 affect things?
Arquette: The entire country of Vietnam has had fewer cases of COVID-19 than we have had in Peoria, and there have been no deaths. Right now, (end of June) Vietnam is not allowing foreigners in unless they are diplomats or essential workers.
Timm: (My Fulbright) at present is still scheduled to start Feb. 1, 2021. I will be getting an update shortly and should know better in a few weeks when I am expected to start.