Professor Carl Minzner is a Fulbright Cross-Strait Scholar during 2019-2020. He came to Taiwan to conduct research on demographic change, particularly on population aging and policy in Asia. Professor Minzner is an expert in Chinese law and governance, and a law professor at Fordham University. He is the author of “End of an Era: How China’s Authoritarian Revival is Undermining Its Rise“, exploring China’s transition away from the three-decades-long reform era characterized by political stability, ideological openness, and rapid economic growth. Prof. Minzner holds a B.A. from Stanford University, a M.I.A. from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, and a J.D. from Columbia Law School.
Author: Fulbright Taiwan
This video traces the journey of an elementary school teacher who chose, as part of her Fulbright project, to study teaching best practices in Taiwan and explore the rich cultural traditions of the Taiwanese people. Lay Kou is a dual language immersion teacher in Utah. Prior to receiving the Fulbright Distinguished Awards in Teaching, she was awarded Teacher of the Month thrice, KSL News Radio & Zions Bank Teacher Feature, and District Outstanding Educator of the Year. Her Fulbright project focused on Taiwanese culture and teaching best practices.
Natalie Sun conducted research on the effects of heavy metal pollution on wild Taiwanese carnivores, in collaboration with the National Taiwan University Veterinary Hospital. YangMingShan National Park, where Natalie’s research mostly took place, offers a wide range of rare species to work on. Natalie aimed to replace blood samples with hair samples to study the heavy metal concentrations in several sites. Through this less invasive method of sampling, it reaches a balance between studying environment and protecting animals. Natalie Sun hails from Northern California and received her undergraduate degree from Amherst College. She discovered her passion for veterinary medicine after researching wild tree swallows and hoped to continue her exploration of this interdisciplinary field through her Fulbright research. Natalie is excited to share and apply her new experiences when she attends UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine.
Dominique Murdock is currently serving her second term as a Fulbright Taiwan grantee. She originally journeyed to Taiwan in 2016 as an English Teaching Assistant (ETA) in Kinmen, and was later awarded a second and third grant from the Foundation for Scholarly Exchange (Fulbright Taiwan) as a TEFL Trainer and Advisor. Being an African American female in Asia, she sometimes struggled to earn credibility as an educator. Therefore, she worked hard to include more cultural diversity in the classroom and training sessions. Dominique Murdock hails from Detroit, MI. Her home institution is The University Of Southern California, where she received her MAT: Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages.
J. Christopher Upton’s research focuses on Taiwan’s newly created special indigenous courts. Chris conducted an in-depth ethnographic project concentrating on one of these courts, studying how the court crafted rules about indigenous customary practices and how indigenous litigants used the legal system to advance their own understandings of indigenous culture. Chris Upton is a lawyer and Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Anthropology at Indiana University Bloomington. During his Fulbright research, Chris was hosted by Academia Sinica in Taipei, Taiwan and the National Museum of Prehistory in Taitung, Taiwan.
Lillygol Sedaghat documented Taiwan’s waste management system and innovations in plastics and electronics recycling through film and digital media. She hopes to inspire conscious consumerism – the realization that every choice we make affects the environment – and spark a global discussion on trash with the #MyWasteMyWay. Using music videos, info-graphics, and maps to promote environmental education, she aims to transform people’s perceptions of trash from something disposable to something valuable. Although she began her research with limited vocabulary, she believed in the importance of using Chinese as the language of choice for her field work and worked hard to improve her Mandarin. While she is still working on finding her voice, she acknowledges that the journey is long, but definitely worth it. Lillygol Sedaghat is a multi-media environmental journalist and speaker focusing on the intersection among science, systems, and people. She is a 2017-18 Fulbright–National Geographic Digital Storyteller. She is an active contributor to National Geographic’s “Planet or Plastic?” global campaign. Lillygol has spoken at UN World Environment Day, Influence Nation Summit DC, and National Geographic on her research. She completed a B.A. in Political Economy from the University of California, Berkeley and was named 5 Under 25: Leaders
Michelle Phillips spent her Fulbright year in Taiwan to research on the maid trade system and compares it with the one in Hong Kong. Because of her multilingual background, she can act as a bridge between employers and domestic workers. After trust was built with the domestic workers, she successfully interviewed over 150 people in total. Later, she will bring the experiences and observations from her research to propose changes in Taiwan, Indonesia, Hong Kong, and the Philippines regarding better protections for migrant workers and their employers. Michelle Phillips is a 4th-year Ph.D. Candidate in Sociology at UC Berkeley. Her current research is focused on the intersection of business, politics and human rights, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region. She is focusing on questions ranging from the role of the state in international trade and migration, the effectiveness of certain policies as well as their unintended consequences, and the impact of business interests on the implementation and consistency of government intervention. In an increasingly interconnected global economy, she believes it is crucial to understand what motivates the people behind these institutions, as well as the de facto impact of strategies they implement.