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As we celebrate International Education Week, I recall my days spent as a Fulbright U.S. Student Program Fellow in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, in the 2010-11 academic year. My Fellowship paved the way for future professional opportunities within the health policy sphere. During my grant period, I was a student in the M.A. program in Critical Disability Studies at York University which is housed within the York University School of Health Policy & Management. During my graduate studies, I engaged in comparative health policy research, concerning the Province of Ontario (Canada) and the State of New York (United States).

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Over 60 million diabetics, and another 70 million so called “pre-diabetics” – individuals at such an elevated risk for this condition that the odds are stacked against them for converting into full-blown diabetes within a few short years. The country I am describing, India, is not the first that comes to mind to most when thinking about the growing problem of diabetes across the world.

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Since I was an undergraduate, I’ve been fascinated by the philosophies, politics, and practices of teaching a second language (in my case, French) to students who have language-based learning disabilities/difficulties in their first language (in this case, English).  This interest followed me through graduate school, into the classroom when I taught at the high school level, and now in my work as a professor in teacher education.  Because my interest in this area has mixed the languages of French and English, Canada has always been my preferred context exploring this question from a research standpoint and when trying to expand best practices in this particular field.  My strong connection to this work was deepened through my recent experience as a Fulbright Scholar and has led to new opportunities to make this connection deeper still.

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