Prof receives Fulbright grant

Kinesiology professor Carol Leitschuh received a Fulbright Lecturer Award to research in the Czech Republic.  Leitschuh will be studying atypical child development in physical activity.

Ashley Goetz

Kinesiology professor Carol Leitschuh received a Fulbright Lecturer Award to research in the Czech Republic. Leitschuh will be studying atypical child development in physical activity.

Over the last 20 years, more than 95 University of Minnesota faculty and staff have received Fulbright grants, and as of Nov. 10, four more can be added to that list. Three professors and one administrator are preparing to make their journeys abroad to lecture or perform research as part of the program. Fulbright recipient Carol Leitschuh, a kinesiology professor, will depart for the Czech Republic on Feb. 1 to lecture at Palacký University. For Leitschuh, who studies motor development and physical activity in early childhood, itâÄôs a matter of âÄúcrossing off the daysâÄù until she leaves. âÄúItâÄôs absolutely exciting,âÄù she said. Leitschuh was an international scholar in 2006 as part of the European UnionâÄôs Erasmus Mundus program and she studied in the Czech Republic as part of that scholarship. This time around, Leitschuh will bring with her an assessment test for identifying physical movement in infants and toddlers, which she created. The two-minute assessment tool monitors childrenâÄôs movement skills. âÄúOne of the things you need to be presenting to [the host country] is something they don’t already have available to them in their country,âÄù Leitschuh said. University Professor Emeritus Josef Mestenhauser , a former honorary consul for the Czech Republic until June 200 8, supported LeitschuhâÄôs application for the Fulbright grant and advised her on it. He said Czech schools have usually been ahead in the field of physical education, and that Leitschuh would âÄúfit right in there.âÄù âÄúObviously she has a very good project,âÄù Mestenhauser said. âÄúShe’s a highly qualified individual.âÄù Leitschuh isnâÄôt the first University faculty to go to the Czech Republic through a Fulbright grant. English Regents Professor Patricia Hampl went to the Czech Republic in 1995 on a Fulbright grant to conduct interviews for a book on literary life in the country since the fall of communism. Hampl, whose trips to the Czech Republic in the âÄò70s also served as the basis for her memoir, said times have changed there since the end of the Cold War. More people speak English there now than they have in the last 20 years, she said. Hampl called the Fulbright a âÄúwonderful programâÄù that helped her establish relationships in the Czech Republic that have lasted to this day. âÄúItâÄôs made a huge difference to me in my teaching there and here,âÄù she said. The other University of Minnesota Fulbright grant recipients include Duluth campus professor Eleanor Hannah, who will be lecturing on the history of political thought in Venezuela, Learning Abroad Center Associate Director Jodi Malmgren, who will travel throughout Japan to conduct seminars, and Humphrey Institute professor Samuel Myers Jr., who is already in Beijing performing research on racial economic inequalities. Five foreign scholars will also be coming to the University to perform lectures or conduct their own research.