Study of the United States Institute (SUSIs) for Scholars – Summer 2019

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION: December 31, 2018

The Public Affairs Section of the U.S. Embassy is pleased to announce a scholarship opportunity for the Summer 2019 Study of the United States Institute (SUSIs) for Scholars.  This opportunity is available to mid-career scholars or professionals who work in the field of U.S. studies (see Eligibility Criteria, below).

Study of the U.S. Institutes for Scholars (SUSIs) are intensive post-graduate level academic programs with integrated study tours whose purpose is to provide foreign university faculty and other scholars the opportunity to deepen their understanding of U.S. society, culture, values, and institutions. The ultimate goal of the Institutes is to strengthen curricula and to enhance the quality of teaching about the United States in academic institutions abroad.

Study of the U.S. Institutes for Scholars will take place at various colleges, universities, and academic institutions throughout the United States over the course of six weeks beginning in or after June 2019. Each Institute includes a four-week academic residency component and up to two weeks of an integrated study tour to another region of the United States. Posts and prospective applicants are encouraged to visit our website page to obtain general information about the Institutes.  The website address: http://exchanges.state.gov/susi

Each applicant must select one of these seven themes when applying:

  1. American Culture and Values
  2. American Politics and Political Thought
  3. Contemporary American Literature
  4. Journalism and Media
  5. Religious Pluralism in the United States
  6. U.S. Foreign Policy
  7. Youth, Workforce Development, and Closing the Skills Gap 

DETAILS OF THE SIX THEMES:

  1. The Institute on American Culture and Values will promote American culture, leadership, and values by providing a multinational group of 18 experienced and highly motivated foreign university faculty and other specialists with a deeper understanding of U.S. society, civil society institutions, democratic principles, human rights, and the rule of law. The Institute will examine the concepts of American exceptionalism and American resilience through social, economic, political, and religious contexts in which, historically, various cultures have manifested and shaped contemporary U.S. culture, values, and society. The program will draw from a diverse disciplinary base and should itself provide a model of how a foreign university might approach the study of U.S. culture and values. The program will take place during the June to August timeframe in 2019.
  2. The Institute on American Politics and Political Thought will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced foreign university faculty and practitioners insight into how intellectual and political movements have influenced modern American political institutions and a deeper understanding of major currents in U.S. political thought from the colonial period to the present. Drawing upon the American Political Development approach, the Institute will provide a full and diverse understanding of U.S. political thought and its connection to U.S. politics, public policy, and institutions by linking contemporary issues with historical and social debates. The Institute will explore particular themes including self-rule and limited government, liberty and freedom, individualism and identity, equality and inequality, and the American Dream.
  3. The Institute on Contemporary American Literature will provide a multinational group of up to 18 foreign university faculty and scholars with a deeper understanding of U.S. society and culture, past and present, through an examination of contemporary American (U.S.) literature. Its purpose is twofold: to explore contemporary American writers and writing in a variety of genres; and to suggest how the themes explored in those works reflect larger currents within contemporary U.S. society and culture. The program will explore the diversity of the American literary landscape, examining how major contemporary writers, schools, and movements reflect the traditions of the U.S. literary canon. At the same time, the program will expose participants to writers who represent a departure from that tradition, and who are establishing new directions for American literature.
  4. The Institute on Journalism and Media will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced and highly motivated foreign journalism instructors and other related specialists with a deeper understanding of the roles that journalism and the media play in U.S. society. The Institute will examine the role of journalists in recognizing and preventing disinformation and will explore strategies for media and information literacy to counter disinformation. Additionally, the Institute will examine best practices in journalism by discussing the rights and responsibilities of the media in a democratic society, including editorial independence, journalistic ethics, legal constraints, and international journalism. Also, the Institute will examine pedagogical strategies for teaching students of journalism the basics of the tradecraft: researching, critical thinking, reporting, interviewing, writing, and editing. The program will also highlight the impact of technology in journalism, including the influence of the Internet, globalization of the news media, and other changes that are transforming the profession. The program will take place during the June to August timeframe in 2019.
  5. The Institute on Religious Freedom and Pluralism will provide a multinational group of up to 18 foreign university faculty and practitioners with a deeper understanding of U.S. society and culture, past and present, through an examination of religious pluralism in the United States and its intersection with American democracy. Employing a multi-disciplinary approach and drawing on fields such as history, political science, anthropology and sociology, law, and others, the program will explore both the historical and contemporary relationship between religion and state in the United States. Participants will examine the ways in which religious thought and practice have influenced, and been influenced by the development of American-style democracy. Study will also include a survey of the diversity of contemporary religious beliefs in relation to the first amendment to the U.S. constitution, elections, public policy, and the demography of the United States. Interfaith dialogue in the American context will be practiced in the context of the group itself as well as site visits to a diversity of religious communities.
  6. The Institute on U.S. Foreign Policy will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced foreign university faculty and practitioners with a deeper understanding of new approaches to U.S. foreign policy and how U.S. foreign policy is formulated and implemented. The Institute will include a historical review of significant events, individuals, and philosophies that have shaped U.S. foreign policy. The Institute will explain the role of key players in U.S. foreign policy including the executive and legislative branches of government, the media, the U.S. public, think tanks, non-governmental organizations, and multilateral institutions. The program will also examine the current U.S. foreign policymaking and the new trends that are shaping policy. Topics such as the concept of American sovereignty, shifting attitudes towards globalism, U.S. foreign aid, the monitoring of foreign investment in the United States, the efforts to combat terrorism and radicalization, new trade policies and agreements, immigration and border safety, and cybersecurity will be included. The program will also discuss the reorganization of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and the new U.S. approaches to international organizations such as the United Nations (UN), the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). The program will take place during the June to August timeframe in 2019.
  7. The Institute on Youth, Workforce Development, and Closing the Skills Gap will provide a multinational group of 18 experienced foreign faculty and practitioners with a deeper understanding of how new socioeconomic trends have changed the concept of work, workforce development, and career paths in the United States. The academic program will include a thorough discussion of the role of U.S. educational institutions, particularly community colleges, in preparing Americans with the skills needed to succeed in multiple industries including business, technology, science, the creative arts, and other emerging fields. Topics such as urbanization, globalization, economic development, and advances in technology such as automation, robotics, and artificial intelligence will also be included. The Institute will offer opportunities for participants to research new ideas, in conjunction with American peers, to better understand the evolution of work, the changing demand for skills, and the advancements in workforce development through retraining, reskilling, and closing the skills gap. The program will take place during the June to August timeframe in 2019.

ELIGIBILITY CRITERIA:

To be eligible for the program, applicants must:

  • Have no prior or limited experience in the United States.
  • Have firm plans to enhance, update, or develop courses and/or educational materials with a U.S. studies focus or component.
  • Have special interest in the program’s subject areas as demonstrated through past scholarships, accomplishments, and professional duties.
  • Be mid-career, typically between the ages of 30-50, highly-motivated, experienced scholars and professionals generally from institutions of higher education or research focused organizations (not-for-profits, think tanks, etc.). While the educational level of participants will likely vary, most should have graduate degrees and have substantial knowledge of the thematic area of the Institute or a related field.
  • Seek to introduce aspects of U.S. studies into the home institution’s curricula, to develop new courses in the subject of the Institute, to enhance and update existing courses on the United States, or to offer specialized seminars/workshops for professionals in U.S. studies area related to the program theme.
  • Demonstrate English language fluency. Institutes are rigorous and demanding programs; participants will be expected to handle substantial reading assignments in English and to fully and actively participate in all seminar and panel discussions.  English fluency is vital to a successful experience in the Institute, both for the applicant and participants from other countries.
  • Be willing and able to fully take part in an intensive post-graduate level academic program and study tour.

HOUSING AND MEAL ARRANGEMENTS:

When possible, each participant will have a private room with a shared bathroom during the residency portion (four weeks) of the Institute.  However, private room accommodations cannot be guaranteed during the residency portion of the program.  During the study tour (up to two weeks), participants will likely share a hotel room with another participant of the same gender.  During the residency, housing will typically be in college or university owned housing.  Most meals will be provided at campus facilities, though participants may have access to a kitchen to cook some meals on their own.

Care will be taken to ensure that any special requirements regarding diet, daily worship, housing, and medical care are satisfied.  Please note that a portion of the program will take place during Ramadan.  While the host institution will make every effort to accommodate participants who are fasting, participants should be made aware of the rigorous nature of the Institute and the expectation that the success of the Institute depends on their full participation.

Health Benefits:

All participants will receive the Department of State’s health coverage of $100,000, with a $25 co-pay per medical visit and $75 co-pay per emergency room visit, for the duration of the program.  Pre-existing conditions are not covered.  Information on the health benefit program may be found online at usdos.sevencorners.com.

HOW TO APPLY:

Please email a completed SUSI for Scholars Application Form to PASExchanges@state.gov with “SUSI for Scholars – Summer 2019” as the subject line.  The application form can be downloaded here (DOC: 80KB).

DEADLINE FOR SUBMISSION:  December 31, 2018

***PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS & RESTRICTIONS:

All participants are expected to participate fully in the program.  Applicant should be aware that he/she is applying for an intensive program, and there will be little time for personal pursuits unrelated to the program.  The Institute is not a research program.  Participants must attend all lectures and organized activities and complete assigned readings.  Family members and/or friends may not accompany participants on any part of the program.