Fulbright Awarded to Bentley Administrator for International Education Study in Germany
Papa Sarr, Bentley’s Director of the Center for International Students and Scholars, recently spent two weeks in Germany studying the country’s culture and educational system as a recipient of a Fulbright award to the U.S. – Germany International Education Administrators Program. “Through this program I’ve gained a better understanding of the educational and cultural backgrounds of Bentley’s international students,” said Sarr.
Sarr, who acts as a secondary academic advisor to all of Bentley’s international students, said the experience gave him a finer understanding of the European educational system, which makes him better equipped to help international students adjust to life at Bentley and advocate for their needs to the faculty and the university.
Sarr had a special interest for applying for the program in Germany. “Germany was the enemy of the world at the end of World War II,” he said. “I wanted to see how the perspectives and the process have changed from a German standpoint, and also learn about their education system and how it relates to the greater European educational construct.”
During the two weeks, Sarr kept a rigorous schedule, visiting academic institutions including Humboldt University, the academic home to luminaries such as Albert Einstein and Karl Marx, and attending cultural events while traveling to Berlin, Strasbourg, Stuttgart, and Frankfort. Sarr’s group consisted of 20 academics from across the United States. “The networking among peers alone was worth the trip,” he says. “We learned a lot from one another just as we learn a lot from our students.”
The U.S. – Germany International Education Administrators Program is a group seminar on Germany’s higher education system for U.S. university, college, and community college administrators who work directly with offices of international exchange and study abroad, career services, alumni affairs, or development and fundraising. The program consists of a two-week seminar in Berlin that provides an introduction to Germany and its higher education system through briefings, government appointments, campus visits, and cultural events.