College of DuPage Professor of English Receives Fulbright Award

By: Mike McKissack

Danica Hubbard Article Image

Danica Hubbard, Professor of English at College of DuPage, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program award to teach in Croatia during the 2019-20 academic year.

Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected on the basis of academic and professional achievement, as well as record of service and demonstrated leadership in their respective fields.

Hubbard, who has taught at the College since 1994, said she is thrilled with the opportunity to teach as part of a course collaboration pairing English Composition with volunteering in the community.

“I am over the moon and honored to represent College of DuPage as a U.S. Fulbright Scholar,” she said. “I will be teaching at University of Zadar, one of the oldest universities in Croatia, dating back to 1396. I am joining an impressive roster of U.S. Fulbright Scholar alumni at the College including DJ Liu, John Stasinopoulos, Ben Whisenhunt and my Liberal Arts Division Dean, Sandra Martins, a Fulbright Hays group award winner. In addition, in my role as a Fulbright cultural ambassador, I look forward to cultivating a sense of belonging and place in an international classroom community by sharing our literacy narratives.”

The University of Zadar’s English Department in Croatia reached out to Hubbard based on her Fulbright project proposal, “Students, Service and Sustainability: Writing for a Purpose,” and extended an invitation for her to teach as part of the U.S. Fulbright Scholar Program.

She said the idea for the proposal grew out of a collaboration with Steve Gustis and Krystina LaSorsa in the College’s Career Services Office to build new English composition service learning curriculum with COD Prairie Manager Remic Ensweiler. Through the class, students volunteered weekly in the natural areas on COD’s campus to engage in prairie restoration and write about their experiences. In Croatia, the students will work together to compose essays, record digital journal reflections and design multi-modal presentations connected to a service learning project to be decided by a needs assessment within the Croatian community. Hubbard said she is looking forward to sharing the program internationally.

“I believe this project is compelling to the international community, as College of DuPage positions itself as a community of learners,” she said. “The word community can no longer be defined as local, with precise boundaries, but instead our community is global, reinforcing the interconnectedness and interdependency of a variety of diverse learning systems. Through the Fulbright teaching residency, we can combine campus resources and learn from one another.”

The Fulbright program is designed to build lasting connections between the people of the United States and the people of other countries and operates in over 160 countries worldwide. Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright, the Fulbright program has given more than 390,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and professionals of all backgrounds and fields the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas, and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.