headshot of Karen Dennis

Karen Dennis

The U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board recently awarded Illinois State University’s Karen Dennis a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program award to teach at Vladimir State University in Vladimir, Russia.

An instructor in the School of Kinesiology and Recreation at Illinois State, Dennis will lecture at Vladimir State as part of a project to teach a new course in physiology and hygiene. She will also conduct workshops on design principles and theory for online teaching and learning. The author of The Effectiveness of an Online Fitness Course, her scholarly work has appeared in such journals as Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise and Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport.

“Dr. Dennis exemplifies Illinois State’s core values through her scholarship and teaching. She continues to build international bridges that benefit students, faculty, and administrators at both universities,” said University President Larry Dietz.

Dennis, who earned a doctorate in education from Illinois State, has presented at international conferences in Vladimir, and hosted Russian physicians in the United States.

The City of Vladimir is designated a “Sister City” with Bloomington-Normal, and has hosted students, faculty, staff, and community members in Russia. Later this month, Illinois State will host the rector (president) of Vladimir State on a visit to campus.

The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program is administered at Illinois State University by Fulbright Program Advisor Lea Cline, Fulbright Scholar Liaison Erin Mikulec, and Interim Fulbright Program Advisor Joseph Zompetti.

Dennis is one of more than 800 U.S. citizens who will teach, conduct research, and/or provide expertise abroad for the 2019-2020 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program. Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected on the basis of academic and professional achievement as well as a record of service and demonstrated leadership in their respective fields.

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to build lasting connections between the people of the United States and the people of other countries. The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the Program, which operates in over 160 countries worldwide.

Since its establishment in 1946 under legislation introduced by the late U.S. Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas, the Fulbright Program has given more than 380,000 students, scholars, teachers, artists, and scientists the opportunity to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas, and contribute to finding solutions to shared international concerns.

Fulbrighters address critical global issues in all disciplines, while building relationships, knowledge, and leadership in support of the long-term interests of the United States. Fulbright alumni have achieved distinction in many fields, including 59 who have been awarded the Nobel Prize, 82 who have received Pulitzer Prizes, and 37 who have served as a head of state or government.