As a Fulbright Taiwan grantee, I always feel honored to introduce my country and discuss culturaldifferences whenever I meet people. When I attended a three-week Fulbright pre-academic program, which was sponsored by Fulbright IIE at Virginia Tech, I met Fulbright grantees from 26 countries. We not only shared our diverse cultures, but also learned about American culture and academic preparation together. It was a time to effacestereotypes and rethink questions of culture and mutual respect; most importantly, it was the time to try to understand other voices. From religiousto political issues, from culinary habits to the educational system, the topics wecovered ranged widely every day that I spent time with Fulbrighters. In a way,this experience was a challenge because it was necessary to expand my international knowledge so quickly, while being prepared to answer questions about my own country. Overall, it was worthwhile to share my perspectives that could present Taiwanese perspectives or speak for Taiwan in an international context.
After the pre-academic program, I started my PhD coursework at the University of Minnesota where I’m currently studying learning technologies in the fields of curriculum and instruction studies. In my first semester, it’s been a thrilling experience to profit from the learning opportunities which arise when meetingfaculties and students with various professional backgrounds at our Learning Technologies Media Lab (LTML, http://lt.umn.edu/). The conversation between learning science and instructional design never ends, and hassparked furtherinterdisciplinary research ideas. This innovative environment helps me to rethink the connection between technology integration and teacher preparation, the influence of the digital age, and the transformative impact of teaching and learning. With more ideas on the way, I’m looking forward to continuing my research journey in the US.