A group of Study of the U.S. Institutes for Secondary School Educators in 2016

Study of the U.S. Institutes for Secondary School Educators

The Study of the U.S. Institutes (SUSI) for Secondary School Educators are designed to strengthen curricula and improve the quality of teaching about the United States in secondary schools and other academic institutions. The Institutes will take place over the course of five weeks during the summer months.
Stay tuned for the application period for summer 2020!

What are the Study of the U.S. Institute Programs?

Participants spend approximately four weeks at host universities where they take part in a series of lectures, seminar discussions and site visits related to each Institute’s theme. The programs provide educators with a deeper understanding of U.S. society, education, and culture, both past and present.

Each Institute concludes with a study tour, which complements the academic program and includes visits to sites of interest in another region of the country. The aim of the study tour is to showcase the rich cultural, geographic, and ethnic diversity of the United States.

Overview of the grant program

The Study of the U.S. Institutes for Secondary School Educators will provide three multinational groups of 20 experienced secondary school educators (including teachers, administrators, teacher trainers, curriculum developers, textbook writers, ministry of education officials, and others) with a deeper understanding of U.S. society, education, and culture – past and present. The focus of the Institutes will be on providing content and materials for participants to develop high school level curricula about the United States. Two of the Institutes are tailored for secondary school teachers and the third Institute is tailored for experienced administrators including teacher trainers, curriculum developers, textbook writers, ministry of education officials, and others.

The impact of the extremely well-organized and thorough program on my work as a teacher of English has been immense. I now have an extensive insight into the similarities and differences between the U.S. and Europe.
Perttu Järvenpää, English Teacher, Omnia vocational school, Espoo; 2016 SUSI for Secondary School Educators (more comments are featured in Fulbright Finland News article "Strategic Focus on Education.")

Through a combination of traditional, multi-disciplinary, and interdisciplinary approaches, the program will examine the history and evolution of U.S. institutions and values, broadly defined. The program will also serve to illuminate contemporary political, social, and economic debates in the American society. The four-week academic residencies will take place at U.S. universities and college campuses, and will consist of a balanced series of lectures, panels, seminar discussions, readings, workshops, site visits, meetings with practitioners in the field, and cultural activities. A one-week study tour to a different region of the United States will complement the four-week academic residencies.


Candidates should be mid-career, typically between the ages of 30-50, highly-motivated and experienced secondary school teachers and administrators with little or no prior experience in the United States. Ideal candidates are individuals who are seeking to introduce or enhance aspects of U.S. studies into their curricula or to offer specialized seminars/workshops for education professionals in U.S. studies or related fields. Candidates should be willing and able to take part fully in an intensive postgraduate level academic program and study tour.

It is imperative that all candidates demonstrate English language fluency. The programs are rigorous and demanding; participants will be expected to handle substantial reading assignments in English and to be full and active participants in all seminar and panel discussions.

Applicants must Finnish citizens. Please note that U.S. citizens are not eligible for the program.

Essential Information about the Program

Program Funding: The program will cover participant costs, including program administration, international travel, domestic travel and ground transportation, book allowance, some cultural activities, mailing and incidental allowances, housing, and subsistence.

Housing and Meal Arrangements: Participants may be asked to share living quarters during the residency portion (four weeks) of the Institute. Private room accommodation cannot be guaranteed during the residency portion of the program.  During the study tour (up to one week), participants may share a hotel room with a participant of the same gender. During the residency, housing will typically be in college or university-owned accommodation.  Most meals will be provided at campus facilities, though participants may have access to a kitchen to cook some meals on their own.

Health Benefits: All participants will receive the Department of State's supplemental health benefit with a coverage of $100,000 with a $25 co-pay per medical visit and a $75 co-pay per emergency room visit, for the duration of the program. Pre-existing conditions are not covered. Information on the health benefit program may be found online at https://www.sevencorners.com/gov/usdos. Participants are responsible for their own health and travel insurance for the duration of the program.

Program Requirements and Restrictions: Participants are expected to participate fully in the program. They are expected to attend all lectures and organized activities, and complete assigned readings. Family members and/or friends cannot accompany participants on any part of the program. Please note that the Institute should not be viewed as a research program.

Host Universities

The University of Montana in Missoula, MT will oversee and administer the three Study of the U.S. Institutes for Secondary Educators under the unifying theme of “Liberty, Equality, and the American Dream.”  All three Institutes will examine this topic through a different lens, capitalizing on the resources and culture of each location.

  • The University of Montana (UM) in Missoula, MT will host one Institute for Teachers from approximately June 2 to July 7, 2019. The Institute will explore American studies through the lens of democracy and citizenship.
  • The Institute for Training and Development (ITD) in Amherst, Massachusetts will host the second Institute for Teachers from June 8 to July 12, 2019. The Institute will explore the ways in which individual rights and social obligations have evolved through American history.  
  • California State University at Chico will host the Institute for Administrators from June 5 to July 10, 2019.  Within the overarching shared theme, the Institute will focus on access and equity in U.S. education and society.  

All three Institutes will conclude with one-week study tours that end in Washington, D.C.

How to Apply?

The application form and one letter of recommendation from an individual who knows you in a professional capacity should be submitted no later than Monday, November 26, 2018, at 10:00 a.m. to the office of Fulbright Finland Foundation, e-mail: [email protected].

The application will be posted during the launch of the application period.

Priority will be given to candidates who have firm plans to enhance, update or develop courses and/or educational materials with a U.S. studies focus or component, who have little or no prior experience in the United States, and who have special interest in the program subject areas as demonstrated through past accomplishments and professional duties.

Prospective applicants are encouraged to visit the U.S. State Department’s The Study of the U.S. Branch website to obtain general information about the Institutes.


Applicants that pass an initial screening will be invited for a personal interview. The interviews are compulsory and will take place at the office of Fulbright Finland Foundation in Helsinki on December 3rd and/or 4th. Candidates invited to the interviews will be notified via email by November 29. A copy of a passport will be requested prior to the interviews.

Please note that Fulbright Finland Foundation does not cover expenses resulting from the interview. Fulbright Finland Foundation Board of Directors will select applications to be forwarded to the U.S. for consideration. Instruction on how to prepare for the interview can be found here.

Final review of the international candidates and selection of the Study of the U.S. Institutes for Scholars nominees from the multinational candidate pool will be conducted by the Study of the U.S. Branch of the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Fulbright Finland Foundation organizes a full day pre-departure orientation for all Finnish Fulbright grantees on May 14, 2019. All grantees are expected to attend.


Application Period Starts October-November
Application Period Ends November-January (determined in the fall)
Interview invitations are sent out to selected candidates (one week before the interviews)
Selections are made March-April
Pre-Departure Orientation for all Fulbright Finland Grantees to the U.S. May
Program starts June-July


Alumni Experiences

Päivi Parkkonen
Study of the U.S. Institutes for Secondary School Educators

Summer 2018

Program Partner

The Study of the U.S. Branch, U.S. Department of State


Mirka McIntire
Phone 044 553 5269
[email protected]