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Fulbright grantees volunteer on Thanksgiving

Fulbright scholars Ali Hassan (L) and Kirsten Hammen (r) help prepare
Fulbright scholars Ali Hassan (L) and Kirsten Hammen (r) help prepare table settings for needy persons at the Feed My Sheep community Thanksgiving dinner.

The Thanksgiving tradition of sharing with others was put into practice recently in Muncie by two Ball State University international students. German-born Kerstin Hammen and Ali Hassan from Iraq, both recipients of prestigious Fulbright scholarships, spent part of Thanksgiving 2006 as volunteers at the annual "Feed My Sheep Community Outreach " Thanksgiving meal held November 22 at Muncie Central High School.

These two Ball State students joined scores of other local volunteers preparing for and serving traditional holiday meals to hundreds of needy and shut-in residents of Muncie.

Hassan, a graduate student in linguistics at Ball State, was spending his second Thanksgiving in  the USA, but it was the first time to celebrate the holiday for Hammen, a telecommunications student from Ball State's sister university in Mainz, Germany.

Following their volunteer duties, Hassan and Hammen joined local Fulbright alumni for dinner in their home.

Established in 1946, the   Fulbright Program aims to increase mutual understanding between the peoples of the United States and other countries, through the exchange of persons, knowledge, and skills. There are nearly 40 former grantees of the Fulbright program living in the Muncie area, according to telecommunications faculty member Dr. Dominic Caristi, Ball State's Fulbright Program advisor.

Fulbright grantees Ali Hassen (L) and Kirsten Hammen (R) help Fulbright alumna Mary
Fulbright grantees Ali Hassen (L) and Kirsten Hammen (R) help Fulbright alumna Mary Catherine Limbird (C) serve needy Muncie residents on Thanksgiving 2006.