Visiting Scholar Spotlight

KSU Fulbright TEA Scholar in Tajikstan

The Impact of the KSU Fulbright Teaching Excellence and Achievement in Media Literacy Program

Photo of Laylo Rahimova
Laylo Rahimova

After receiving a prestigious Fulbright Scholarship from the U.S. government, I, a high school English teacher, had the opportunity to experience the American way of life and their educational system. I spent six weeks at Kent State University, located in the town of the same name in the American state of Ohio.

Together with 17 fellows from Eastern Europe and Central Asia, I attended lectures on general academic seminars and media literacy given by professors from this university as well as invited experts included in the Fulbright International Exchange Program.

I plan to pass on the knowledge and experience I have gained to high school students, teachers, and anyone else who wants to be of service to everyone. As media is a rudder which moves weight of 21 century, the information and knowledge I have gained has made a huge impact on my life and work. I now have a great deal of confidence in myself as I can tell the difference between false information and correct information and can deliver all the information with confidence to my students.

Another strong side of participation in this program is the change in inner energy which I did not have before. Having returned from America, I now work as a director of an educational institution and help teachers and students to achieve success which was difficult for them. I am now one of the people who can change their way of thinking. In addition, I also conduct seminars and sessions for teachers and motivate them and by passing on my knowledge we all move together for the better.

Photo of Halis Sakiz
Aggarwal-Blackburn Visiting Scholar Spotlight

Halis Sakiz

Halis Sakiz, born and raised in south-east Turkey, attended Boğaziçi University to study a BA in the field of Counseling Psychology. With a high interest in human development and learning, he added Primary Education as his second major and graduated from the double major program in 2008. Following his graduation, he worked for the Ministry of Education as a school counselor. Following this post, Halis started working at the Social Services and Child Welfare Agency as a counseling psychologist. In the Agency, he supported people living in disadvantaged conditions, mainly by conducting home visits to carry out assessment of their psychosocial needs, reviewing psychosocial aid applications and offering family counseling.

While practicing in the field, he completed a MA in the field of Counseling Psychology in Boğaziçi University, where he researched the quality of life of children with specific learning disabilities. In 2012, he thought it was time for a full transition to academia and obtained a full scholarship from the Turkish Ministry of Education to pursue a doctorate abroad. He obtained a PhD at the University of Manchester, United Kingdom, where he researched the inclusion of students with disabilities in schools. He returned to Turkey and is now an associate professor at Mardin Artuklu University, located in his hometown. Spending extensive time in schools with students, practitioners and families, Halis has taken part in several national and local projects that involved efforts to crate more inclusive schools for all children and provide them with meaningful educational and psychosocial services in these schools.

In academia, Halis has taught, conducted research, published extensively and supervised graduate students in several areas including school counseling, inclusive education, inclusive and multicultural counseling, and psychology of students with disabilities and refugee students. He is now researching how counseling and guidance services can be inclusive and multicultural and what are the systemic elements that are associated with such provision with Dr. Marty Jencius in Counseling Education and Supervision in EHHS. Beside all his professional tasks and affiliations, Halis is an active folk culture researcher and musician.