The Crowne Plaza, a centrally located hotel in Athens, Greece was an exciting place to be on October 9th. The EducationUSA/Fulbright office hosted 30 U.S. Universities and Colleges and admissions officers, local alumni, U.S. Fulbrighters and staff were busy interacting with the 350 visitors that stopped by that day.
The set up this year involved three different EducationUSA/Fulbright stations. The front desk was manned by staff and volunteers and provided general information and guidance to students, parents, student counselors and educators. Adjacent to the main desk were two stations where 2018-2019 U.S. Fulbright Students provided materials and answered a broad range of questions on U.S. Undergraduate and Graduate level studies. From that point on and spiraling around the Democritus ballroom you could find a variety of U.S. liberal arts colleges and major research universities. The representatives of these institutions were composed of U.S. based admission officers, local recruiting alumni and a number of U.S. Fulbright students and scholars who volunteered to represent their alma maters or home institutions.
Among the special guests this year was a group of Greek Fulbright Alumni Educators who attended the Fair to get a better understanding of studies in the U.S. The Greek teachers left the Fair that day with some basic knowledge of U.S. studies and useful materials for further reading which will enable them to provide basic information on U.S. higher education to their students – the multiplier effect at work.
The U.S. Embassy was represented by Jennifer Schueler, Cultural Affairs Attaché, who was impressed by the fact that EducationUSA and Fulbright in Greece worked hand in hand to promote exchange and mutual understanding and to inform the public on the endless higher education opportunities that exist in the United States.
In recent years it has also become a tradition for the U.S. Fair in Athens to host parallel sessions. Going one level down, two newly renovated and state of the art auditoriums hosted three different presentations. Katie Seidel, Associate Director for Lawrence University in Appleton, WI delivered a talk on U.S. Liberal Arts Colleges to approximately 80 participants and was assisted by a panel of U.S. Fulbright students who also took questions from the audience. Down the hall, Dr. George Perdikaris, a theoretical physicist at Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant MI presented on U.S. Graduate Studies opportunities at the Masters and Ph.D. levels. The last session for the day involved the Fulbright Scholarship program which was delivered by Els Siakos Hanappe, Greek Fulbright Program Coordinator.
Photo: Alexandros Manopoulos