School of Library and Information Science Student Heads to India on Fulbright Award
Kent State University School of Library and Information Science student Cameron Crane has received a Fulbright Student Program Award and will be traveling to Baranas University in Varanasi, India, to create resources for professionals working with the deaf.
Crane, a student at the School of Library and Information Science’s Columbus site, attended World College West with a world study in Mexico and graduated from Sonoma State University with a degree in gender studies in 1995. Currently, he works full-time as a statewide educational consultant with the Ohio State School for the Deaf (OSD) and is working toward a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS degree) with a concentration in academic librarianship and an interest in community colleges. He hopes to complete the MLIS program this summer.
“It is part of my job as an educational consultant at the state school for the deaf, to arrange for professional development and resources for professionals working with deaf students,” Crane says. “Through my work and my School of Library and Information Science studies, I became interested in how best to aggregate information and distribute resources to those professionals. I was interested in working abroad and after some research, I felt India would benefit from a professional resource such as a dynamic website or digital library for professionals working with the deaf. A student Fulbright seemed like a good vehicle to begin such a project.”
Crane credits his advisor, Miriam Matteson, Ph.D., assistant professor in the School of Library and Information Science, for her assistance with forming the Fulbright proposal and guiding him through the MLIS program.
Crane’s interest in the Fulbright program started because he believes it is the best program to study, learn and exchange knowledge across cultures. He started by researching programs and countries offered by the Student Fulbright Grant and then began the application process through the Kent State Fulbright Project Advisor. His student grant will allow him to take a leave of absence from his job and travel to India from August 2013 through May 2014.
“While overseas, I will work with professionals in deaf education to begin to create an online resource and nexus around best practices and information for deaf education in India,” he says. “As an educational consultant for the state, what I learn there will assist me in creating and curating similar resources for Ohio. Through my Fulbright-Nehru experience, I expect to learn from both library and deaf education professionals, allowing me to mature professionally and develop library skills around supporting professionals through information and resource management.”
For others who may be interested in the Fulbright program, Crane believes it is important to focus your project on something you know well and feel will benefit both your scholarship and the school or organization you are proposing to work with.
"Take the time to research the country, region and institution you want to work with before submitting your application, and secure an invitation as soon as possible from the organization," Crane says. “It is an honor to get such an award. I feel very thankful, yet nervous, about doing such an ambitious project.”
For more information about the School of Library and Information Science, visit www.kent.edu/slis.