Purpose: The San Diego Chapter of Fulbright Association (SDCFA) will initiate a pilot project: Global Friendship Program in 2021/2022. The goal is to connect new Fulbright students and scholars within the San Diego region with local community hosts for friendship and support. 

Overview: 

San Diego is the destination for 20-40 international grantees each year that are hosted by the multiple universities and institutions within our community. As you recall your Fulbright experience, it was filled with endless application papers and waiting for acceptance as a grantee.  When the letter/email arrived, the excitement, planning of travel, and ongoing communication with your host institution continued. Then you arrived at your destination in a new nation and you had to find a place to live and get settled for the extent of your grant period. Perhaps you had assistance in locating available housing or learned the community on foot when looking for a residence. Regardless, you had to locate grocery stores, restaurants, transportation availability and how to link for a TV or the internet or other communication methods in your new home. I am sure the internet makes these tasks much easier than for those of us who were ‘early’ or ‘pre-internet’ grantees.

It is our hope that the Global Friendship Program will become a ‘welcome mat’ for these grantees to our San Diego community and extend our friendship to our international Fulbright colleagues. This program is not intended to provide housing, and there are no legal or financial obligations. Hosts simply meet up with their assigned Fulbright grantees for conversation. We hope that friendships will continue beyond program end, and we believe participating in this program will be a rewarding experience for alumni and grantees.

We are reaching out to the Fulbright Alumni residing in the San Diego community to offer an opportunity to:

  1. Join the pilot program as community hosts

  1. Volunteer as members of the new Chapter/Community Committee to be established. This committee will manage the pilot project and the Global Friendship Program

Committee:  Membership: 1-2 members of SDCFA Board of Directors and 2-3 Fulbright Alumni. This committee will be part of the chapter’s outreach projects. Currently the Chapter members are Rosemary Goodyear and Maria Ledesma-Carbayo.

Scope of Committee Work: The committee will establish a meeting schedule and determine how to – 1) reach out to alumni and grantees 2) orient hosts and grantees 3) supervise and expand the pilot project 4) evaluate and provide recommendations to the San Diego Chapter Board of Directors

It is time to give back!!! 

Please consider this opportunity to serve on the planning committee and/or share your friendship by becoming a community host. Once the committee has formed, additional information will be communicated. For interested please send your name and email to rtgoodyear@gmail.com and copy the chapter e-mail account sandiego@fulbright.org 

Respectfully,

Khalid Tahboub, President; Rosemary Goodyear and Maria Ledesma-Carbayo