But after talking with UM-Flint Associate Professor Susan Gano-Phillips about her Fulbright Award experience, Uludag decided to apply in the summer of 2011. He felt his knowledge of computer science, and his understanding of the culture of his native Turkey, would be a good fit for the program.
His Fulbright selection process had two main phases, first was being selected by the U.S. Committee headquartered in Washington D.C. The second was the Turkish Committee that also includes members of the U.S. Embassy. Finally, almost nine months after applying, Uludag received the letter of acceptance.
As part of the process, he had to have invitations from universities in Turkey to participate in workshops and conferences while he is there. He currently has more than a half dozen invitations.
Uludag’s main areas of research include smart grid networking infrastructure, wireless mesh networks and educational research using mobile computing environments, such as Android.
“I will not only have a chance to enhance my research and teaching at the top universities, but I’ll be able to work with the top students in Turkey,” said Uludag. “I am planning on leaving for Turkey in August or September.”
During his year in Turkey, Uludag wants to establish connections between UM-Flint and universities in that country to develop programs to exchange faculty and students.
Uludag has had a lot of time to think about his upcoming journey. He just spent five days on a bus touring Michigan as part of the Michigan Road Scholars program.
There were only two Fulbright Awards available this year for science and technology fields in Turkey, and Uludag keeps rereading his letter of acceptance to convince himself that he received one of them.
“I won’t fully believe that I have been accepted until I’m standing inside a university in Turkey.”