The United States and Finland share common values and priorities that extend into research and education. From cutting-edge research in the Arctic, to addressing climate change, to sharing best practices on pedagogy, the Fulbright Finland Foundation actively supports our shared commitment to study, research, teaching, collaboration, and innovation on some of the world’s most pressing challenges.
A great example of this is the Seeking Solutions for Global Challenges Award. The inaugural recipients of this award are in Finland this current academic year working in partnership with Finnish institutions to seek solutions to today’s hardest problems. And of course, there’s the Fulbright Arctic Initiative. The Arctic faces critical and unique policy challenges on many issues including on climate change, health infrastructure, environmental protection, Indigenous rights, and governance. Launched in 2015 to coincide with the U.S. Chairmanship of the Arctic Council, the Fulbright Arctic Initiative supports scholars, researchers, and professionals from Arctic Council member countries to carry out collaborative research focused on the unique challenges of the Arctic region.
The ongoing pandemic has also upended lives around the world and disrupted global travel. This has impacted Fulbright as well. After a difficult 2020 that led many grantees to defer their programs, the Foundation has a record number of grantees in 2021: approximately 80 U.S. grantees and 60 Finnish grantees. The competition is tough, and there are many more qualified candidates than there are available grants. The Embassy supports the Foundation’s efforts to seek new partnerships and engage with new stakeholders on both sides of the Atlantic to help award even more scholarships to qualified grantees.
Beyond working with grantees, the Foundation actively and continuously brings together Finnish and U.S. higher education institutions helping create linkages and supporting collaboration in education, research, and innovation. Most recently, when a higher education delegation from Minnesota visited Finland in November with the Governor of Minnesota, the delegation’s first stop was the Fulbright Finland Foundation. This is a testament to the Foundation’s knowledge of the higher education landscape in both the United States and Finland and its ability to convene key stakeholders to strengthen educational linkages and student and researcher mobility between our two countries.
The Fulbright Finland Foundation has long been a leader and pioneer among Fulbright Commissions across the globe.
This year, we celebrate the 75th anniversary of the global Fulbright Program. The Fulbright Finland Foundation has long been a leader and pioneer among Fulbright Commissions across the globe. Fulbright Finland has a strong presence in the Nordic and Baltic region and continues to expand its work across borders connecting Fulbright grantees and alumni to develop lasting partnerships. Fulbright has always been a jewel of our academic exchanges, and among the various Fulbright country programs, the Finnish-American Fulbright program is the crown jewel.
I am proud of the work our two countries have done to support the Foundation and the thousands of American and Finnish students and scholars who have participated and contributed to the Fulbright Finland Foundation and its lasting impact. Here’s to many more achievements in the years to come.