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Leslie Bloom, associate professor of educational leadership in the College of Education, will be a Fulbright Specialist sharing her expertise this fall on how to do meaningful qualitative social justice research with top scholars in the nation of Colombia.
Bloom, whose work primarily has focused on research and activism with low-income women and families, has been selected by the competitive Fulbright Specialist Program for a grant at the Universidad de Antioquia in Medellin, Colombia.
She is the sixth Roosevelt professor to be selected for a Fulbright award in the last three years, and is the 11th from Roosevelt to be chosen for the prestigious honor since 2000.
“I’m very excited to have the opportunity to work with an incredible group of scholars in Colombia,” said Bloom, who will be in the South American nation from Oct. 21 through Nov. 6.
As a Fulbright Specialist, Bloom will give lectures to scholars and graduate students at five Colombian universities, and will be advising research faculty on how to do effective research for a wide variety of studies, many which involve public health issues. Some of the topics include: Maternal Healthcare in the Colombian Health System; HIV Transmission Risks in Colombia; Cultural Aspects and Health Disparities of Cardiovascular Disease in the Amazon; Use of Public Television for Increasing Civic Behavior among Adolescents; research on the Counterfeit Clothing Industry; and Street Children’s Health Vulnerabilities in Medellin.
“I’ll work with them on doing qualitative research, specifically focusing on how they can do their work to improve the conditions for those whom they are studying so that it translates into activism and policy change,” said Bloom, who teaches both educational leadership and women’s and gender studies courses at Roosevelt University.
Bloom, who has been teaching full-time at Roosevelt since 2009, expects the experience to be as much of a personal learning opportunity as it is one for the Colombian scholars. “Doing activism in the United States is very different from what is allowed and acceptable in Colombia and I expect to learn a lot about the differences,” Bloom said.
The author of the book, Under the Sign of Hope: Feminist Methodology and Narrative Interpretation, Bloom was a 1996 Fulbright Scholar who studied feminist non-profit organizations in Mexico City while she was a professor at Iowa State University. She recently published an article and was guest editor of a special issue of International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education on the “Global Perspectives of Poverty Research for Social Justice.”