In a preview of 2022, Rita Faden, president of FLAD, talks about the main projects of the year and her expectation around a “more predictable year” than the previous ones.

“We expect this to be a year of consolidation of several projects that were launched in 2020 and 2021 and that are now structuring for FLAD: the FLAD Science Awards (Atlantic and Mental Health), the SIPN program, the FLAD Design Awardand the Translation Support Program.” But if the pandemic allows, it will also be “a year of reencounters.” Rita Faden talks about the desire to reconnect with the Portuguese-American community: “we hope to return to the United States and to contact again with the population of Portuguese ancestry, even to discover new forms of intervention”.

In a year “more predictable” than the previous ones, the president of FLAD president wants to resume face-to-face events at the Foundation and also the trips that allow us to recognize and act on new opportunities for the Portuguese.

Culture (and more) in the Azores

The first semester will be marked by three initiatives that will take place in the Azores. At the end of March, independent American cinema arrives on Terceira Island through Outsiders, a film cycle that presents a different look at the contemporary life of young American adults. In May, it is São Miguel’s turn to receive to host the Festa.Fúria.Femina., the exhibition of 151 works by 65 artists that are part of the FLAD collection and that arrive for the first time in the Azores. Also in May and for two months the Visual Arts Course will take place in São Miguel, bringing together teachers, artists, and theorists of the Arts.

“The Azores have, among other dimensions, an enormous artistic and cultural importance that must be recognized. That is why we want to contribute to the Azorean cultural agenda in this post-pandemic context and to the perception of the Azores as a place of artistic training.”

Also noteworthy is the Azores Summer School, in August 2022. It is a summer course led by experts on topics such as the geological evolution of islands, organisms, and environments from the past or marine biodiversity in remote oceanic and volcanic archipelagos. For 12 days, participants will be able to discuss the results of the research work on these topics on Santa Maria Island, either through lectures, conferences, or study visits.

Rediscover the community and take Portugal further

“After the inevitable postponement due to the pandemic, we are very hopeful that we will be able to bring together in FLAD the American Legislators of Portuguese ancestry”. Rita Faden wants to resume the Legislators’ Dialogue in the spring of 2022 but she also looks forward to returning to the United States to talk and to build new bridges with the community.

At the same time, 2022 will also be a year to deepen knowledge about the Portuguese-American community.

“We are developing a study to characterize the community, conducted by ICS, which will allow us to better understand how the community organizes itself from a social, political, business, cultural point of view.”

The results of the study will be known in the second half of 2022 and are expected to be useful to Portuguese entities, organizations, and individuals who want to establish relations with the U.S.

One of the highlights of the year will also be the participation in NAFSA, the largest study abroad fair in the United States, in which SiPN will be more clearly represented, alongside several Portuguese universities. “FLAD has been very involved in this effort to internationalize our universities, in partnership with Fulbright and the Erasmus+ Agency.”

New ways to get closer

“In 2022 we want to start the program for American writers to come to Portugal, encouraging face-to-face and close contact with some of the most relevant names in contemporary literature.” On the other hand, Rita Faden is also committed to bringing Portuguese culture to the USA.

“It is our intention to organize a cycle of Portuguese independent cinema in New York, but we are still at an early stage, exploring different possibilities.”

In addition to the regular support to Portuguese researchers for internships and papers’ presentation in the USA, 2022 will also be marked by the attribution of the first FLAD Science Award Atlantic Junior. The winners, high school and professional education students, will have the opportunity to visit several institutions dedicated to Science in the USA.

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