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Two OU Professors Named Fulbright U.S. Scholar Fellows

Two OU Professors Named Fulbright U.S. Scholar Fellows

June 17, 2022

Two professors from the University of Oklahoma have been selected to receive a Fulbright U.S. Scholar fellowship for the 2022-2023 academic year from the U.S. Department of State and the Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board for their academic merit and leadership potential.

Kash Barker, Ph.D., and William Frick, Ph.D., are among approximately 800 U.S. scholars, artists and professionals selected for this prestigious honor. As Fulbright scholars, they will receive a grant to conduct research or teach abroad for the next academic year and will have the opportunity to exchange ideas and contribute to finding solutions to challenges facing our communities and world.

“We are honored to have these two especially accomplished faculty members chosen as Fulbright scholars,” said OU President Joseph Harroz Jr. “With this selection, their contribution to the academic excellence of our university has been recognized, and we know their high-quality and impactful research will continue during their time abroad.” 

Barker, selected for the Fulbright Finland Foundation’s Seeking Solutions for Global Challenges program, will spend five months at Aalto University in Finland, where he will work with Ahti Salo, a renowned leader in decision analysis, to research how to more effectively make relocation decisions for refugees driven from their home countries due to the effects of climate change.

A David L. Boren Professor of Industrial and Systems Engineering in the Gallogly College of Engineering, Barker has spent the last 14 years studying the reliability, resilience and impacts of infrastructure networks and the communities that rely on them. He will also spend part of his Fulbright stay offering lectures in the Systems Analysis Laboratory at Aalto University.

Barker earned a bachelor of science and a master of science in industrial engineering from OU and a doctoral degree in systems engineering from the University of Virginia.

As a Fulbright Public Policy Fellow, Frick will spend four months in Côte d'Ivoire, where he will participate in a range of education sector related activity that touches on collaboration with ministries, workforce development, youth representation and related entities and will focus on institutional development issues and accreditation policy processes for the International University of Grand-Bassam. 

With more than 30 years of experience as an educator, Frick is the Rainbolt Family Endowed Presidential Professor of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies in the Jeannine Rainbolt College of Education and founding director of the Center for Leadership Ethics and Change. His research interests include the philosophy of administrative leadership, school system reform within urban municipality revitalization efforts and broader cultural studies exploring the intersection of identity and schooling.

He earned a bachelor of arts in religion from Lycoming College, a bachelor of science in theology studies from Cairn University and a master of science in counseling psychology from Bucknell University. He also earned a doctoral degree in educational theory and policy from The Pennsylvania State University.   

For over 75 years, the Fulbright program has provided more than 400,000 participants with the opportunity to engage in cutting-edge research and expand their professional networks, often continuing research collaborations started abroad and laying the groundwork for forging future partnerships between institutions. As Fulbright Scholar alumni, their careers are enriched by joining a network of thousands of esteemed scholars, many of whom are leaders in their fields. Fulbright alumni include 61 Nobel Prize laureates, 89 Pulitzer Prize recipients and 40 who have served as a head of state or government.

For more information about the Fulbright Program, visit

About the University of Oklahoma

Founded in 1890, the University of Oklahoma is a public research university located in Norman, Oklahoma. OU serves the educational, cultural, economic and health care needs of the state, region and nation. For more information visit