BCSP Alumnae Collaboration in Bologna

Julie Wade (BCSP AY 1991-92, Indiana University) and Candice Whitney (BCSP AY  2013-14, Mount Holyoke College)

Julie and Candice met in 2013 while Candice was studying abroad with BCSP and bonded over their strong mutual commitment and interest in supporting local causes. In May 2015 Candice graduated with a B.A. in Anthropology and Italian and taught English in Casablanca throughout the academic year 2015-16. Julie was based many years in Bologna and currently lives the nearby city of Ravenna. After serving as Education Advisor for the Fulbright Commission in Bologna and member of the BCSP staff, she became an English instructor at the University of Bologna Language Center. In 1998 Julie founded the International Women’s Forum of Bologna (IWF), a non-profit organization for all English speaking women in Bologna and its nearby areas, by serving as a professional, cultural and social resource for its members.

As an Anthropologist, Candice is particularly interested in migration and women’s issues. The valuable experiences and contacts that she cultivated in Bologna, thanks in great part to Julie’s guidance and encouragement, inspired her application for a Fulbright research grant.  Julie enthusiastically supported Candice’s proposal, bolstered by the sponsorship of the IWF, by writing a letter of recommendation to the Fulbright commission. Candice was awarded the Fulbright grant to study how North African business women’s identities shape their motivations, goals, and strategies of perseverance in Bologna and the Emilia-Romagna region.

In addition to the IWF, Candice’s research project is affiliated with the Department of Education Studies at the University of Bologna and the Universo Interculturale Association, all of which help facilitate her research and introductions with interview subjects. As a student in Bologna, Candice volunteered for the public health organization ViaLibera, and, at the time, Julie was leading various community service projects for the IWF. Candice connected Julie to ViaLibera, and Julie mentored Candice, introducing her to prominent organizations, such as Immigrazione e Nuove Generazioni (ING, Immigration and New Generations), and figures such as Ouidad Bakkali, Councilwoman for Culture and Education for the City of Ravenna.

Julie recently accompanied Candice to the Fulbright orientation in Rome, and Candice’s active involvement in IWF community continues.  She writes a column for the IWF newsletter entitled ‘Fruits of Migration: Celebrating the Internationalization and Development of Bologna’. The column highlights projects and initiatives created by migrants in Bologna and Emilia-Romagna. “Bologna Inside,” a guidebook published by the IWF with patronage from the City and Province of Bologna, is being developed into its 3rd edition. Candice is assisting the editor, Andrea Vogt, an American journalist and author who reports on crime, politics and social affairs in Europe and the U.S., with the content.“I am extremely grateful to be a member of the IU-BCSP network and for the strong partnerships that have been formed”– Candice Whitney.

BCSP looks forward to seeing what this amazing duo will accomplish next!