AUBURN – Beth Guertal, an agronomy and soils professor at Auburn University, has been named a Fulbright scholar to teach in Mauritius this fall.
Guertal will spend fall semester teaching turfgrass management and sustainable agriculture at the University of Mauritius. She says she also hopes to develop opportunities for her students there and back home at Auburn to get involved with projects on the island’s golf courses.
Mauritius, an island in the Indian Ocean off the southeast coast of Africa, is a popular tourist destination for Europeans because of its tropical climate, beautiful beaches and world-renowned golf courses.
Guertal has a head start on establishing a relationship with one particular Mauritius golf course – the one where Storm Lupier is superintendent. Guertal worked with Lupier when he was assistant superintendent at Stillwaters Golf Club in Dadeville.
“It’s a small world,” Guertal said, adding that she has contacted Lupier and hopes to set up several projects for her Mauritius students on the golf course where he now works and to arrange for future internship opportunities for Auburn students.
In addition to the professional opportunities the Fulbright scholarship offers, Guertal is looking forward to the chance for personal growth.
“I am very excited to travel to a region of the world where I have never been and to have the opportunity to teach students at the University of Mauritius,” Guertal said. “I’m also taking my family, and the chance for all of us to become part of another culture, at least for six months, is an event they’ll treasure the rest of their lives.”
The Fulbright program is designed to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries by providing opportunities for American scholars and professionals to conduct research, lecture and consult with other scholars and institutions abroad. Participants are chosen based on their academic merit and leadership potential.
(Written by Leigh Hinton.)