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K-12 School Teachers Return from Fulbright Program

The Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Hawaiʻi-Mānoa (UHM) announces the successful completion of a four-week Fulbright study program in the Philippines and Viet Nam. Twelve K-12 teachers from schools in Illinois, Missouri, and Hawaiʻi were chosen to participate.

Prior to in-country travel, the teachers had three days of preparation at UHM with background briefings on the Philippines and Viet Nam. The teachers then visited Manila and Cebu in the Philippines, and Hanoi, Thai Nguyen, Ha Long Bay, Hue, Nha Trang, and Ho Chi Minh City in Viet Nam. At many of these stops, the teachers attended lectures from local experts most of whom are college professors. In Manila, they visited historic sites such as the American Cemetery and the old quarter of Intramuros, before traveling to Mactan, the site of the battle between Magellan and Lapu-Lapu, the first salvo of Filipino resistance to Spanish colonization in the 16thcentury.

In Viet Nam, the teachers visited the Ho Chi Minh Mausoleum, the National History Museum, the Hue Citadel, Thai Nguyen Center for Minorities, Tu Duc’s tomb in Hue, Tien Mu Pagoda in Hue, Nha Trang Oceanographic Institute, Cu Chi Tunnels, and a Cao Dai Temple outside Ho Chi Minh City. In both Viet Nam and the Philippines the teachers had many opportunities to interact with their local teacher counterparts and their students.

During the in-country travel period the US teachers began work on lesson plans to incorporate their experiences into their school curriculum. To date, they have worked on lessons on various perspectives of the Viet Nam War, the use of monuments in society, and human rights issues in such events as the Viet Nam War and the EDSA Revolution in the Philippines in 1986.

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The program is named after former Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. The program was established in 1946. The Center for Southeast Asian Studies at the University of Hawaiʻi-Mānoa is one of eight National Resource Centers (NRCs) for the study of Southeast Asia in the United States as designated and funded by the United States Department of Education.


Hue Citadel – Fulbright participants – Photographer unknown

FRONT ROW l-r: Ivee Cruz (ULS), Aimee Beeson, Lee Marcheschi, Alison Hartle (ULS), and  Natasha Carlsen

BACK ROW l-r: Moira Sheehy, Kelly Maciejewski, Douglas Wehner, Janene Maclin, lead teacher John Bickle (‘Iolani),  Kevin Hough, and field assistant Hang M. Le


Fulbright participant Douglas Wehner points out his hometown of St. Louis on a map to a group of students in the Philippines.

Photographer: Lee Marcheschi