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A&M-Commerce Professor Receives Prestigious Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award

Professor Maia Lamarque, Texas A&M University-Commerce

 

COMMERCE, TEXAS—Dr. Maia Lamarque, a professor in the Department of Literature and Languages at Texas A&M University-Commerce, has received a Fulbright U.S. Scholar Award for the 2024-2025 academic year from the U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board.

The Fulbright Program is one of the world’s largest and most prestigious educational exchange programs. Eight hundred scholars study, teach, and conduct research abroad annually through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program.

A&M-Commerce Provost Tami Vacha-Haase, Ph.D., expressed pride in Lamarque’s accomplishment and emphasized the significance of the Fulbright Award:

“We are immensely proud that Dr. Lamarque has been selected for this prestigious opportunity,” Vacha-Haase said. “Her dedication to scholarship and her profound contributions to the field exemplify the spirit of the Fulbright Program and the values here at A&M Commerce. Her work not only enriches our academic community but also fosters greater understanding and collaboration on a global scale.”

Cross-Cultural Collaboration

Fulbright recipients play an important role in international relations. They exchange ideas, build people-to-people connections, and work to address complex global challenges.

Fulbright scholars demonstrate exceptional academic achievement, cultural sensitivity, leadership skills, and a genuine commitment to cross-cultural exchange and collaboration. They engage in cutting-edge research and expand their professional networks, often continuing research collaborations started abroad and laying the groundwork for future partnerships.

Exploring Peruvian Folktales

Through the Fulbright program, Lamarque has received a grant that will enable her to conduct research in Peru for four months later this year. She will analyze Peruvian folktales from a psychological perspective to identify social notions, patterns, and biases in oral stories. Specifically, she will focus on stories in indigenous languages, analyzing their psychological components, similarities, differences, and cultural implications.

“I’ve been researching folktales for years, and I am from Peru, so I wanted to study folktales from that area,” Lamarque said. “I’m collaborating with scholars in the fields of linguistics, folklore, anthropology, and culture, and we are specifically looking at oral narratives and folktales shared in the indigenous languages in Peru, the Andes, and the Amazon Forest.”

She added: “My research will shed light on how folk stories highlight Peruvian identities and how these indigenous groups construct and perceive each other and their reality. Through a cross-cultural study of these narratives, I will also gain and share an understanding of global social identity.”

A Passion for Learning

Lamarque arrived at A&M-Commerce in 2005 from Tulane University in New Orleans, Louisiana, where she graduated with her doctorate in Latin American Studies and Culture. At A&M-Commerce, she teaches mainly graduate and advanced courses in the Hispanic Studies program and courses in the Department of Psychology.

With a deep passion for learning and education, Lamarque holds multiple degrees and is currently working on her doctorate in psychology at A&M-Commerce. Originally from Lima, Peru, she grew up in a family prioritizing education.

“My parents, both professionals, always told my sisters and me that education would take us places,” she said.

Indeed, Lamarque’s education has taken her far—literally and figuratively—from Lima to Louisiana to Texas and now, full circle, back to Peru as a Fulbright Scholar.

Receiving a Fulbright Award has been a long-time goal for Lamarque, and she feels extremely honored to be a recipient in 2024- 2025.

“A Fulbright is awarded to only a very small percentage of academics around the world,” she said. I am honored to receive such a prestigious award and serve as an ambassador for the U.S. in Peru.”

Famous Fulbrighters

Notable Fulbright alums include 62 Nobel Laureates, 89 Pulitzer Prize winners, 78 MacArthur Fellows, 41 heads of state or government, 17 U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom recipients, and thousands of leaders across public, private, and non-profit sectors.

Famous recipients include poet Maya Angelou, author John Steinbeck, Prime Minister of Belgium Alexander de Croo, and Former President of Croatia Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović.

The Fulbright Program

Fulbright is a program of the U.S. Department of State, with funding provided by the U.S. government. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations worldwide also provide direct and indirect support to the program, which operates in more than 160 countries worldwide.

For more information about the Fulbright Program, visit https://FulbrightProgram.org.