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Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence Feher researches global food security

Professor Istvan Feher, a Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence, is teaching this semester at The University of Tulsa and Tulsa Community College. TU and TCC joined to host the Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence for the 2016-17 academic year. Community partners include Tulsa Global Alliance and the Oklahoma Center for the Humanities at TU.

Feher is from Hungary and is an economist who has spent his career studying food production, agricultural policy and the economics and sociology of food. He served in the Hungarian government as the head of Cabinet of the Ministry of Agriculture and deputy secretary of state, Ministry of Agriculture and Regional Development.

In addition to his responsibilities as a Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence, he is researching and studying sustainability and food issues in Oklahoma. Feher said he is particularly interested in food production and distribution systems development.

“The students at TU and TCC are better global citizens just by the exposure and engagement that Dr. Feher brings to the classroom and the study of food sustainability,” said Douglas Price, TCC’s director of global learning.

Professor Feher, far left, visits the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma with TU’s Global Scholars

Feher is leading courses as part of TU’s Global Scholars Program and TCC’s Honors Program on subjects related to global food security. From agricultural production worldwide to food deserts in the Tulsa area, the issue of food supply systems and food security has become a general priority. He will lead discussion and critical analysis in the classroom as well as in the greater Tulsa community.

“I can always count on a meaningful conversation with Dr. Feher,” TU finance junior Anna Bebermeyer said about her experience in Feher’s course. “I was initially intimidated by his laundry list of career achievements, but his classic Hungarian friendliness and true passion for teaching put me at ease.”

Feher is in a position to serve as a unique expert resource for our students, said Lara Foley, assistant provost for global education at TU. “He wasted no time in engaging with all manner of people from around the state – farmers, policymakers, industry experts and community leaders – all with the aim of integrating their knowledge into his courses. Moreover, his upcoming series of roundtable discussions on the history and governance of the European Union could not have been timelier,” she said.

The Fulbright Scholar-in-Residence program provides an opportunity for cultural and academic exchange between a prominent international scholar and the host institution. Institutions that receive scholars, and the scholars themselves, are selected through a competitive process, and residencies are funded by a grant from the Fulbright Scholar Program sponsored by the U.S. Department of State.