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University of Massachusetts celebrates International Education Week November 15-19

BOSTON - The five campuses of the University of Massachusetts system will join with universities from more than 100 nations worldwide in celebrating International Education Week from November 15th through November 19th.  This year's theme is International Education: Striving for a Sustainable Future.

University of Massachusetts President Jack M. Wilson noted that International Education Week holds special significance for UMass, given the University's ever-expanding global reach.

"This important week highlights the enduring relationships the University of Massachusetts has formed with partners and colleagues from every corner of the world. Our diverse portfolio of global initiatives, coupled with UMass faculty engaged in international teaching, research and service, underscores the University's commitment to preparing students to compete and collaborate in an increasingly global society," President Wilson said.

International Education Week also reinforces a point of pride throughout UMass and across the state as a result of the University's recent ranking as one of the world's best universities in 2010.  UMass recently ranked 56th in the Times of London's Top 200, which showcased the University's commitment to academic excellence, and the wide range of international programs and opportunities being offered to students across its five campuses.

More than 1,200 UMass students per year have benefited from participation in international study abroad programs in recent years. 
In an effort to highlight the University's expansive work and offerings around the world, the UMass International Relations website launched two new resource pages that provide online international student enrollment data and an overview of the U.S. Fulbright Program for UMass faculty and students exploring research and study grant opportunities.

In recent months, five UMass Dartmouth faculty members were named Fulbright Scholars, and five UMass Amherst alumni, including four 2010 graduates, have been awarded Fulbright scholarships for international studies for this academic year. They are among more than 1,500 U.S. citizens who will travel abroad during the 2010-11 academic year through the Fulbright U.S. Student Program.

"Global engagement is a key element of the University's mission. During International Education Week and through the year, we celebrate the important work of UMass students, faculty, staff and alumni, who continue to make a difference in the global community as Fulbright scholars, distinguished researchers, and productive, internationally-engaged citizens," said Marcellette G. Williams, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Student Affairs and, International Relations.

Global endeavors at the University of Massachusetts date back to 1876, when President William Smith Clark was invited to Japan to help create an agricultural college in Hokkaido.  Today, the University maintains partnerships across all seven continents and offers more than 100 study abroad opportunities to UMass students.

International Education Week is a joint initiative of the U.S. Departments of State and Education.  Now in its 11th year, the week-long celebration highlights the importance of international education, study abroad programs and collaboration among nations.

International Education Week activities at the five UMass campuses include:

Amherst (

  • An International Research Workshop will highlight a wide range of global research projects conducted each year by UMass Amherst faculty, introduce faculty from different fields working in the same country or region, and identify issues that pertain to international research efforts and sources of funding. A post-panel discussion will focus on opportunities for large, collaborative projects between UMass Amherst and international partners.
  • A Legal Issues Forum for International Students will address issues and concerns that international students may have relating to immigration and basic legal and civil rights as non-permanent residents.

Boston (

  • An "International Education Week Kick-off Celebration" will highlight programs coordinated by UMass Boston student clubs and organizations.
  • The International Education Festival will feature presentations by international students, former and prospective study abroad students, Fulbright and other exchange program participants, UMass Boston study abroad awardees, and OITA-IVSA scholars.
  • A World Music Performance for students, faculty and staff will be held in the UMass Boston Campus Center Ballroom.

Dartmouth (

  • "Personal Experiences from Abroad:" Returning students will present stories and slides highlighting their international study abroad experiences.
  • The Foreign Literature and Languages Department will offer foreign language discussion groups and an Open House.
  • The Indian Student Association will host its annual Diwali Festival and Dinner.

Lowell (

  • The Intercultural Festival will celebrate International Education Week with a night of music, dance and food from around the world.
  • In his lecture, "Haiti - Nine Months After the Quake,"David Campbell, executive director of All Hands Volunteers, will focus on current conditions in Haiti and the importance of volunteerism and service learning.
  • The Middle East Center at UMass Lowell will present "The Power of Nonviolence Around the World," with Professor David Cortright, director of policy studies at the Notre Dame Kroc Institute. Professor Cortright will provide an overview of the core principles of Gandhian nonviolence and cite historical and recent examples of nonviolent resistance such as in Serbia, Ukraine and Nepal.

Monday, November 15, 3:00 pm-4:00 pm, Trustees Room, Cumnock Hall, N. Campus

  • IRAN - Music and Culture from a Personal Perspective
    Traditional Desserts from Iran will be served 
  • Dr. Majid Charmchi, Professor, Mechanical Engineering
    Dr. Samira Farboodmanesh,  a UML Alumnae from Mechanical Engineering
    Dena Saadat, PhD student in Mechanical Engineering
    Sponsored by the International Students & Scholars Office

Tuesday, Nov. 16, noon-1 p.m.,  Alumni Hall, N. Campus 

  • NIGERIA - A Panel Discussion On History and Culture
    Nigerian-style lunch will be served
  • Dr. Oliver Ibe, Associate Professor of Electrical & Computer Engineering
    Merrytime Ebhohon, BS student in Electrical Engineering
    Solomon Ileanaju Ugbane, BS student in Mechanical Engineering
    Chukwuemeka Michael Udeji, MS student in Energy Engineering             
    Sponsored by the International Students & Scholars Office

Thursday, Nov. 18, 2-3:30 p.m.,  O'Leary, Room 222, S. Campus 

  • TURKEY - A Poster & Slide Show Presentation.  Turkish Tea & Dessert will be served.  UML Students from Turkey will accquaint you with their culture. Sponsored by the International Students & Scholars Office.

Worcester (

  • UMass Worcester will host its 5th annual International Craft Sale, featuring works from China, Vietnam, Cape Verde, Ethiopia, Ghana, Malawi, Senegal, Sudan, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Portugal, Argentina, Brazil and Peru. Proceeds benefit artisans and community programs in developing countries.

To learn about new global initiatives taking place at UMass, please visit:

Contact:  Robert P. Connolly, 617.287.7073




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Robert P. Connolly
Vice President for Strategic Communications and University Spokesperson
617.548.0238 (cell)
617.287.7073 (office)

Ann Scales
Director of Communications
617.838.3963 (cell)
617.287.4084 (office)

JoAnn Conley
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Jan Brogen
Senior Writer
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