Ruppel Receives Second Fulbright, Headed to Slovakia

photo of Dr. Fred Ruppel

Dr. Fred Ruppel is returning to Slovakia.

Recently awarded a six-week grant under the Fulbright Specialists Program – his second Fulbright to work in that central European country – the Eastern Kentucky University economics professor will spend May 27-July 19 collaborating with one or two Slovakian co-authors on an economics textbook.

“We will begin this summer, laying out the content and hopefully writing more than half the chapters,” Ruppel said. “We will finish it this fall.”

Ruppel, who will stay in Nitra, home of the Slovak Agricultural University, worked on the first half of the textbook in Slovakia in 2004-05, when he received his first Fulbright. During that stay, he also taught a full load of classes.

In all, Ruppel has made six trips to Slovakia, once accompanying his wife Carol, a faculty member at Model Laboratory School who also received a Fulbright during the 2009-10 academic year. In 2009, Ruppel was the recipient of a “Memory Medal” from the Slovak Agricultural University.

“I love the country,” he said, “mostly the people. My family and I have been well received and well treated there. They are a very giving, loving people.”

Ruppel has also co-authored a textbook entitled “International Trade and Policy,” which was targeted to the Slovak Republic. His co-author was Professor Jan Pokrivcak, an international economist with the Slovak Agricultural University. Pokrivcak visited EKU during the Spring 2008 semester, presenting two seminars on economic conditions in Slovakia, with the focus on the nation’s growth coming out of Communism. Pokrivcak will be one of the co-authors on the new textbook.

Ruppel is one of more than 400 U.S. faculty and professionals who will travel abroad this year through the Fulbright Specialists Program. The Fulbright Specialists Program, created in 2000 to complement the traditional Fulbright Scholar Program, provides short-term academic opportunities (2-6 weeks) to prominent U.S. faculty and professionals to support curricular and faculty development and institutional planning at postsecondary academic institutions around the world.

The Fulbright Program, America’s flagship international educational exchange activity, is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Over its 60 years of existence, thousands of U.S. faculty and professionals have taught, studied or conducted research abroad, and thousands of their counterparts from other countries have engaged in similar activities in the United States. More than 285,000 emerging leaders in their professional fields have received Fulbright awards, including individuals who later became heads of government, Nobel Prize winners, and leaders in education, business, journalism, the arts and other fields. 

Recipients of Fulbright Scholar awards are selected on the basis of academic or professional achievement.

Published on April 20, 2011