In the city of brotherly love, 125 Fulbright Foreign Students from over 60 countries gathered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from May 5 – 8, 2016 to explore U.S. political values and traditions, the electoral process, and the current presidential campaign.
Tom Healy, a member on the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, provided inspirational remarks at the opening dinner held at the Independence Visitor’s Center. Mr. Healy was appointed by President Barack Obama in July 2011 to the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board, which oversees the worldwide Fulbright Program.
From March 3-6, 2016, Fulbrighters took to the “City of Brotherly Love,” Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to participate in the 2016 Enrichment Seminar, “Democracy in Action: U.S. Politics and Elections.” Joining the more than 130 students over the course of local cultural site visits, community service activities, and a presidential election simulation workshop included accomplished political commentators, strategists, and academics.
Held at the Independence Visitor’s Center, the opening dinner welcomed CNN’s Michael A. Smerconish to deliver a phenomenal keynote address, “Stuck in the Middle with You: How Did We Get Where We Are (Politically) and What Will It Take to Get Out.” Smerconish, who is the author of two New York Times’ best sellers, analyzed the current fraught U.S. political climate heading into the 2016 general election in November, and even offered an apt comparison between the U.S. two-party system, voter preferences, and citizens’ proclivity to shop at specific grocery stores based on location.