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Business Observer Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021 8 months ago

Spanish mission: University inks deal with prestigious scholarship program

The agreement will allow Florida Polytechnic to welcome more teachers and researchers from Spain into its ranks.
by: Brian Hartz Tampa Bay Editor

Created in 1946 by the U.S. Department of State, the Fulbright Program has become one of the most prestigious academic scholarship opportunities for scholars worldwide, with more than 400,000 college and university students, post-graduate students and faculty receiving the award, which facilitates study and research abroad.

Courtesy. Randy Avent, left, president of Florida Polytechnic University, and Alberto López San Miguel, executive director of the Fulbright Commission in Spain.

Now, thanks to a new agreement with the U.S.-Spain Fulbright Commission, Florida Polytechnic University will be able to host more Spanish Fulbright scholars at its campus in Lakeland. The agreement also expands the institution’s ties to Fulbright member nations — the university, according to a news release, has similar pacts with Australia, Belgium, Canada and Luxembourg. It has also hosted Fulbright scholars from Iraq and Germany.

Spanish teaching and research faculty are expected to arrive in Lakeland starting in the fall semester next year. In the meantime, a press release states, Florida Polytechnic President Randy Avent will visit the Fulbright Commission in Madrid, Spain, to further formalize the accord.

“This agreement helps us provide more opportunities for our students to gain the global perspective that will help them succeed when entering the workforce,” Avent states in the release. 

Alberto López San Miguel, executive director of Spain’s Fulbright Commission, praised the new deal with Florida Polytechnic. The school's profile has risen dramatically in recent years thanks to its highly ranked science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) programs, as well as its Innovation, Science and Technology Building. Designed by world-renowned architect Santiago Calatrava, the building has won more than 20 global awards and was named one of the 16 most breathtaking buildings in the world. 

Although its enrollment is just over 1,600, Florida Polytechnic has become an academic powerhouse since its founding in 2012. Focused solely on STEM education, the institution has won the blessing of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), the State University System of Florida and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

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