April 23, 2019
Wheaton College Professor Emeritus Dr. Paul W. Robinson was awarded a Fulbright to teach at Uganda Christian University in Mukono, Uganda.
Wheaton College Professor Emeritus Dr. Paul W. Robinson is no stranger to the Fulbright award.
Back in 1977, he won a Fulbright-Hays Doctoral Dissertations Abroad Fellowship, which supported his Ph.D. thesis research among nomadic pastoralists on the desert frontier between Kenya and Ethiopia.
“That is where I learned what has been at the heart of my scholarship, teaching, and mentoring for the past four decades—a commitment to listening to otherwise largely unheard and unacknowledged voices, voices that can inform and contribute to our understanding of our world, our faith, and our calling,” Robinson said.
This year, he was awarded the Core Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program Fellowship to teach at Uganda Christian University (UCU) in Mukono, Uganda, located outside the capital city of Kampala—and it’s an award that Robinson hopes will become something of a capstone in his life and vocation.
“My first 20 years in the secular academy taught me much about scholarship and teaching; my 14 years at Wheaton and my involvement as a co-founder of the Christian Bilingual University of Congo, enlarged that to specifically consider and practice integrative, transformative learning,” he said. “Such learning is what leads to the formation of students’ full humanity and is the heart of higher education and the soul of Christian higher education.”
Although Robinson will teach several courses during his time at UCU, his main goal is “to work with UCU’s faculty, administration, and students to develop a coherent and vibrant core ethos and practice of integrating faith-learning-service, or as UCU puts it ‘a complete education for a complete person,’” he said. “Included in this part of the project will be a research initiative that will support the development of faith-based higher education at UCU and in the region.”
As Robinson looks back at his time at Wheaton College and looks forward to this new opportunity, he expressed gratitude, saying: “I could not have even begun to think about this project without the rich experience I had as a Wheaton College faculty member. The core commitments of the College and many faculty colleagues are what substantially shaped this initiative.”
Ultimately, Robinson hopes that the Fulbright will allow him to come alongside his colleagues and friends as UCU as they seek to enrich and deepen their curriculum. “It’s also an opportunity for me to learn and contribute to the emergence and development of integrative higher education globally,” he said. “This is what most deeply moves and shapes me as an educator.”—Emily Bratcher