Published: Sept. 23, 2016

From the mid-19th century until about the 1930s, Chinese immigrants maintained secret societies in many corners of the world. The societies communicated across continents, and members often recognized each other through oaths and rituals. During the 1920s, many leaders of different secret societies assassinated each other.

Their mode of communication and the reasons behind the murders are a puzzle, one that Fredy González, a CU Boulder history professor, hopes to solve while on a Fulbright scholarship in Taiwan. He also hopes to debunk the myth that the Chinese were “naturally violent” and linked to opium and prostitution.

A portrait of Fredy Gonzalez.

Fulbright Scholar awardee Fredy González, a professor of history, hopes to solve a puzzling part of Chinese history while in Taiwan.

“I am hoping I can piece together a larger cause, to demystify that popular racism as a result of these conflicts,” says González, who arrived in Taipei in July and will spend the next nine months researching the secret societies.

Two CU Boulder professors have been offered Fulbright Scholar awards to pursue teaching and research abroad during the 2016-17 academic year. The other recipient is Andrew Schwartz, associate professor of law. Schwartz will be going to New Zealand.

The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the federal government. Recipients of Fulbright awards are selected on the basis of academic and professional achievement as well as record of service and demonstrated leadership in their respective fields.

For González, this is his second Fulbright award. In 2012-13, he was based in Mexico City exploring Chinese immigration to Mexico. That project culminated in the book Paisanos Chinos: Transpacific Politics among Chinese Immigrants in Mexico, which is slated to be published late next spring by the University of California Press.

A portrait of Andrew Schwartz.

Fulbright Scholar awardee Andrew Schwartz, associate professor of law, will be researching and lecturing at the University of Auckland as part of a project studying securities crowdfunding.

Schwartz will spend the first half of 2017 researching and lecturing at the University of Auckland as part of a project studying securities crowdfunding, the online offering of private company securities (part ownership) to the general public.

Schwartz, who has authored numerous law review articles on securities crowdfunding, said New Zealand is a perfect location to continue his research because the country has been engaged in securities crowdfunding longer than others, since 2014. Millions of dollars have already been raised on licensed internet platforms there, making the country a worldwide leader in this emerging field, Schwartz said.

In contrast, he said, the U.S. federal crowdfunding law was enacted in 2012, but only went into effect this year because of the need for the Securities and Exchange Commission to draft rules and regulations for this new type of online securities marketplace. As such, Schwartz believes the U.S. can learn from New Zealand’s experience over the past few years and plans to share his results with the SEC upon his return.

Five CU Boulder graduate students or alumni were offered Fulbright Student grants this past spring to pursue teaching, research and graduate studies abroad during the 2016-17 academic year. One student was named an alternate. For more information, visit the Fulbright Scholar Program and the Office of International Education at CU Boulder.

If you have received a Fulbright Scholar award for 2016-17, contact Elizabeth Lock at