Chemistry professor Ellane Park has been named a Fulbright U.S. Scholar for South Africa. She was awarded the scholarship in the area of nanotechnology and is planning to travel to Durban, South Africa, in spring 2021 to spend six months as a guest lecturer at the University of KwaZulu-Natal (UKZN). In addition to her teaching collaboration, Park will work with faculty at UKZN to integrate nanotechnology applications into the curriculum and facilitate teaching workshops for faculty on micro teaching and active learning pedagogy.
Park has long cultivated an interest in nanotechnology and says her decision to apply to the Fulbright was directly influenced by work she was doing at Rollins.
“My interest in pursuing work in South Africa stemmed from the nanotechnology class I created for non-science majors at Rollins,” says Park. “In this class, students learned of the broad impacts that nanotechnology has on medicine, the environment, consumer goods, and public health. In particular, nanotechnology has enabled HIV/AIDS-detecting diagnostic devices to become portable, easier, and more reliable in South Africa.”
Park believes the experience will expand her global network and positively impact her scholarship. In turn, she hopes to bring her new experiences back into the classroom.
“I hope this Fulbright project will positively influence my teaching and scholarship back at Rollins,” she says. “Students interested in pursuing a career in the sciences typically end up taking general chemistry in their first year at Rollins. I’d like to integrate more of the ‘big picture’ applications (nanotechnology, for example) into this general chemistry curriculum and motivate students to see direct correlations of the fundamental science they learn in the classroom with real-world applications.”