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MSI Presidents Gather in Berlin to Develop Ideas to Expand Access to Study Abroad

Ten presidents from some of the country’s best minority-serving institutions (MSI) gathered on November 4 at CIEE's new Global  Institute - Berlin for the inaugural Study Abroad Leadership Workshop for Minority Serving Institutions.

George Wright
George Wright, President, Prairie View A&M University

Developed in collaboration with the Penn Center for Minority Serving Institutions, the full-day leadership workshop was designed to prompt conversation around the importance of exposing students from MSIs to international education opportunities.

According to a 2014 reportby the Institute of International Education, less than 10% of undergraduates study abroad before graduating. Of that already small portion, only 7.6% are Hispanic, 7.3% are Asian, and 5.3% are African-American. CIEE is committed to increasing access to study abroad by traditionally underrepresented student groups, and the Leadership Workshop represents an important step in this effort. 

Workshop attendees discuss ideas to expand access to study abroad for more students at minority serving institutions.

Attendees of the workshop included:

  • Joseph I. Castro, California State University, Fresno
  • Wayne Frederick, Howard University
  • Mildred Garcia, California State University, Fullerton
  • Willie Larkin, Grambling State University
  • Elmira Mangum, Florida A&M University
  • Michael J. Sorrell, Paul Quinn College
  • Roderick L. Smothers, Philander Smith College
  • Vinton Thompson, Metropolitan College of New York
  • Henry N. Tisdale, Claflin University
  • David Wilson, Morgan State University
  • George Wright, Prairie View A&M University

The workshop featured a panel discussion around Putting Study Abroad into Action moderated by Marybeth Gasman, director of the Penn Center for MSIs, that offered the presidents concrete ideas on overcoming the barriers of cost, curriculum, and culture to expand access to study abroad to students at their institutions.

Michael McRobbie
Michael McRobbie, President, Indiana University

Panelists included Andrew Gordon, founder and president of Diversity Abroad; Beth Donaldson, vice president of Global Enrollment Management at CIEE; Aaron Bruce, chief diversity officer at San Diego State University; Joti Sekhon, Winston-Salem State University; and Dr. Keshia Abraham, interim dean of Arts & Sciences at Florida Memorial University.

“The importance of study abroad for every student today is well established, yet we know that many institutions are finding it difficult to create a robust set of international programs for students and faculty. We heard from all of our member schools that the importance of having support from top university leaders cannot be overstated,” explained James P. Pellow, president and chief executive officer of CIEE. “With the Penn Center for MSIs being the leader in championing high-quality programs for Minority Serving Institutions, this partnership to sponsor the first Study Abroad Leadership Workshop for Minority Serving Institutions is an important contribution to the field and to shaping the lives of many students from MSIs.”

Gneisenaustrasse 27: Welcome to the Future of Study Abroad

On November 4, CIEE staff, U.S. and German dignitaries, and students gathered in the tree-lined courtyard of the new CIEE Global Institute - Berlin for a ribbon-cutting and grand opening celebration.

Ribbon Cutting VIPS
L-R: Kendall Brostuen, Michael McRobbie, Robert Fallon, Ambassador John Emerson, James Pellow, David Belt, Cansel Kiziltepe

Located at Gneisenaustrasse 27 in the heart of Berlin’s Kreuzberg district, the Global Institute - Berlin is designed to overcome the primary barriers that prevent many students from studying abroad: cost, curriculum, and culture. It integrates a student-centered living and learning facility with affordable, flexible academic programming options that allow students of all majors to design their ideal international experience. More than 120 students are currently enrolled at the Global Institute - Berlin for the fall 2015 semester.

“As the ‘city of reinvention’ Berlin is the ideal venue for us to continue to innovate the study abroad experience so that it is accessible to more students,” said James P. Pellow, Ed.D., president and chief executive officer of CIEE. “Our new campus in Kreuzberg is a portal where the United States can continue to learn from Germany through high-quality academic programs for students from all socio-economic backgrounds and countless academic majors.”

The ceremony featured reflections from:

  • David Belt, executive director and founder of Macro Sea, the architecture firm that led the redesign of the Global Institute building
  • Kendall Brostuen, chair of CIEE’s Academic Consortium Board
  • Joël Gallegos, past chair of CIEE’s Academic Consortium Board
  • Cansel Kiziltepe, member of German Parliament, Berlin Friedrichshain-Kreuzberg
  • Michel Robbie, Ph.D., president of Indiana University
  • Robert Fallon, chair of CIEE’s Board of Directors

Keynote speaker The Honorable John B. Emerson, U.S. Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, remarked:

“Diplomacy is a conversation and educational and cultural exchanges enrich that dialogue. Both German and American alumni have told me how their exchange experiences influenced their worldviews and enabled them to see more clearly areas of common interest and ways to find common ground. I congratulate the CIEE Global Institute on this new program and thank future students and faculty in advance for their commitment to the goals that Senator Fulbright defined for the program that bears his name. Those goals apply to all exchange initiatives, namely to bring ‘a little more knowledge, a little more reason, and a little more compassion into world affairs.’

Ambassador Emerson
The Honorable John B. Emerson, U.S. Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, speaks during CIEE's grand opening of the Global Institute - Berlin.

Learn more about the CIEE Global Institutes.

CIEE Launches Global Institute in Paris; Unveils New Global Internship Program in 11 Locations

CIEE: Council on International Education and Exchange today announced it will open a Global Institute in Paris and offer a new Global Internship program in 11 locations spanning five continents beginning in 2016.

These efforts are part of a larger slate of 11 new programs approved by CIEE’s Academic Consortium Board during its annual meeting at the CIEE Annual Conference, “The Reinvention of Study Abroad: Setting the Course for 2020,” underway today through November 7 in Berlin, Germany.

“We’re listening to our students. They’re asking for more options that fit their busy schedules and rigorous academic requirements. More courses taught in English. And more opportunities to gain real-world work skills while immersing themselves in new cultures. That’s why we’re expanding our Global Institutes, which offer the most flexible study abroad programming available, into more cities and developing new internship and short-term options,” said Maritheresa Frain, executive vice president, study abroad at CIEE. “Our goal is to ensure every student has access to a study abroad program that’s right for their needs, schedule, and resources. With these new programs, we’re well on our way to meeting this goal.”

At the CIEE Global Institute – Paris, which will open in fall 2016, CIEE students will have the option of enrolling in CIEE’s Open Campus program, with the opportunity to combine CIEE courses with one direct enrollment course at a local CIEE host institution, such as the Université Sorbonne Nouvelle Paris 3 or the Université Paris Diderot Paris 7. 

CIEE Global Institutes provide affordable, flexible academic programming options for students of all majors to design their ideal international experience, with options for internships, research projects, and community service. Students can enroll in one, two, or three six-week academic blocks in Paris, or combine blocks at multiple CIEE Global Institutes in Berlin, London, or Rome for comparative academic study.

Following CIEE’s merger with the Academic Internship Council, CIEE will offer a new Global Internship program in 11 locations across North America, Latin America, Africa, Europe, and Asia beginning in summer 2016. The eight-week program, which will be offered in the summer, fall, and spring, combines a full-time, unpaid internship with an integrated academic seminar that offers students of all majors the opportunity to develop professional skills, learn intercultural abilities, and gain professional work experience in a local or multinational company or organization.

“The demand for internships, especially as part of a study abroad experience, has never been greater. In fact, internships and service programs account for nearly 12 percent of all study abroad today. Through our new Global Internship program, students can gain critical skills in some of the world’s leading centers of business and the arts,” continued Frain. “The intensive nature of the Global Internship program, combined with its short eight-week duration, ensures students of every major – from communications to public health to engineering – get maximum impact from their investment over the summer.”

The CIEE Academic Consortium Board also approved nine semester and short-term programs, including:

• Sao Paulo, Brazil – Business and Culture Short-Term
• Beijing, China – International Relations Short-Term
• Toulouse, France – Language and Culture Short-Term
• Toulouse, France – Engineering, Technology, and Society Short-Term
• Dublin, Ireland – Engineering, Technology, and Society Short-Term
• Ferrara, Italy – Language and Culture Short-Term
• Lima, Peru – Language and Culture Short-Term
• Madrid, Spain – Business and Culture Short-Term

• Toulouse, France – Language and Culture

For details on CIEE’s full program offerings, visit www.ciee.org/study.


CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange reports it is making significant progress toward its Generation Study Abroad pledge to increase study abroad opportunities for students from all academic majors and from diverse socio-economic backgrounds.

Research shows that students who participate in study abroad have higher grade point averages, graduate faster, and are more attractive to future employers. Yet fewer than 10 percent of all U.S. college students study abroad. In November 2014, CIEE joined the Institute of International Education’s Generation Study Abroad challenge by committing to breaking down each of the three main barriers to study abroad – cost, curriculum, and culture – with a set of specific, concrete, action-oriented programs designed to enable more students to take part in international education. Today the organization is on track to meet its five-year goal to provide $20 million in student financial aid, sponsor passports for 10,000 students, train more college faculty, and create more flexible curriculum options by the year 2020.

In the nine months since launching efforts in January 2015, CIEE has made progress in each area of its pledge, specifically:

Breaking cost barriers
Student Scholarships: CIEE awarded a total of $5,965,000 in scholarships and financial aid to high school and college students and institutions.
Faculty Grants: CIEE awarded the inaugural $20,000 CIEE Generation Study Abroad Access Grant to Northshore Technical Community College in Louisiana to support an innovative faculty-led study abroad program in the Middle East designed specifically for students in STEM fields.

Breaking curriculum barriers
Flexible Semester Study Abroad Curriculum Model: CIEE reinvented the study abroad model with the launch of the Global Institutes in Berlin, Germany; London, England; and Rome, Italy. The CIEE Global Institutes provide affordable, flexible academic programming options for students of all majors to design their ideal international experience, with options for internships, research projects, and community service. Students can enroll in up to three 6-week academic blocks in one location, or combine blocks from multiple locations for comparative academic program study. In most cases, students can maintain their home institution’s financial aid while studying at multiple Global Institutes.
Short-Term Study Abroad Curriculum Model: CIEE increased short-term program options to 301 sessions available during January, May, and three summer sessions. This allows students of all academic majors and challenging schedules to participate in study abroad as their academic and personal responsibilities permit.
Expanded STEM Study Abroad Programs: CIEE added new science, technology, engineering, math (STEM), and sustainability curriculum options to its portfolio. CIEE now offers 104 study abroad programs, with STEM course options in 47 locations worldwide - providing students with the most study abroad options for STEM disciplines available today.
New Faculty Development Seminars: CIEE created faculty development seminars focused on best practices in international education to help train faculty from colleges and universities across the country and in all academic disciplines in how to develop and deliver high-quality faculty-led study abroad programs.

Breaking culture barriers
CIEE Passport Caravan: CIEE provided new passports to 250 college students with 550 more scheduled through the end of the academic year. Obtaining a passport is the first step for many students to believing they can truly study abroad.
Scholarships for Students with Disabilities: To celebrate the 25th Anniversary of the American with Disabilities Act in July 2015, CIEE partnered with Mobility International USA to support students with disabilities, who are underrepresented in study abroad. Through the CIEE/MIUSA Access the World Scholarships, CIEE has provided more than $45,000 in scholarships to students with disabilities to study abroad through a diverse selection of CIEE summer programs in Europe, the Middle East, and Africa. In total, CIEE/MIUSA Access the World Scholarships will fund 20 students’ participation in CIEE summer programs and five students’ participation in the Open Campus program at CIEE’s new Global Institute in Berlin, Germany.
Minority-Serving Institutions Presidents Workshop: CIEE and the Penn Center for Minority-Serving Institutions have developed a one-day workshop for presidents from minority-serving institutions across the United States to review the research on the impact of study abroad on student success and discuss ways to expand opportunities for their student bodies’ to study abroad.

“Study abroad is rapidly becoming a core requirement for students across the country who are seeking the skills that will prepare them for our culturally diverse and interconnected world. Research shows that international study can help students improve their success in college, as measured by grade point averages, graduation rates, and employment opportunities. We are grateful to our Academic Consortium members, Academic Consortium Board, and worldwide CIEE staff who have rallied around the building blocks to our Generation Study Abroad pledge to expand study abroad to more young people,” said CIEE President and Chief Executive Officer James P. Pellow, Ed.D. “We would not be breaking down these barriers without their help and there is still so much more to do.”

Over the next four years, CIEE will continue its commitment to breaking barriers to study abroad by offering more scholarships, faculty grants, passports, and flexible programming options that make an international experience accessible to even more students, particularly those in underrepresented populations.

Read CIEE’s pledge and follow its progress at http://www.ciee.org/generation-study-abroad/progress/.

CIEE Celebrates 50 Years of Study Abroad Partnership with Japan Innovating Cultural and Educational Exchange

To commemorate 50 years of partnership with Japanese educators and students, on September 30 CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange announced the CIEE Japan 50-Year Anniversary Scholarship: Summer Study Around the World before an assembly of international dignitaries that included heads of Japan’s top academic institutions, as well as U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy.

The newly created scholarships will be awarded to 50 promising young Japanese students to study abroad on CIEE summer programs in more than 40 different countries. CIEE will award 10 scholarships in 2016, followed by 20 more in 2017, and another 20 in 2018. Scholars from a range of disciplines – language, business, culture, marine science, public health, engineering, art, and more – will see their tuition waived for courses offered at CIEE Study Centers around the globe, including in Argentina, Bonaire, China, Cuba, the Czech Republic, France, Germany, Ireland, Mexico, the Netherlands, Portugal, Russia, Senegal, and the United States.

The scholarships were announced by James P. Pellow, Ed.D., president and chief executive officer of CIEE, who said, “We honor the first steps that Japan’s students took in 1965, which broke cultural and logistical barriers, and encouraged mutual understanding and friendship between our nations. They are the inspiration for the CIEE Japan 50-Year Anniversary Scholarship, which seeks to help Japanese students overcome the main barriers to study abroad – cost, curriculum, and culture. This scholarship program will allow Japanese students to join Americans and other international students in study programs around the world.”

U.S. Ambassador to Japan Caroline Kennedy (3rd from left), CIEE President & CEO James Pellow (6th from left), and CIEE Japan staff participate in a traditional Japanese sake barrel breaking during a celebration of CIEE’s 50 years of study abroad partnership with Japan.

Since CIEE opened its office in Tokyo in 1965, it has provided scores of educational exchange programs to more than 60,000 Japanese and international students and educators who have gone on to serve as leaders in business, education, the arts, and public service. The experience they’ve had on CIEE programs has opened the door for alumni to work across cultures as global citizens, helping to bridge cultural differences and encourage warm relationships between nations, businesses, and people.

“Over the past 50 years, more than 60,000 people have participated in CIEE’s international exchange programs. And each one of them has a story of how the CIEE experience was life changing. My former assistant, for example, participated in CIEE Japan’s study abroad program when she was an exchange student here in Tokyo. This is just one example of how CIEE programs have brought us closer together,” said Ambassador Kennedy. “I would like to extend my deep appreciation for your dedication to international education and friendship between our two countries. I would also like to thank CIEE for its support of the TeamUp campaign to increase the number of American and Japanese students studying in each other’s countries, and for its spectacular new scholarships for Japanese students to study around the world. You truly are cultivating a new generation of leaders for the United States and Japan.”

The variety of programs led by CIEE Japan has been diverse over the last five decades and includes initiatives which, at the time of their inception, were considered groundbreaking. Today they have become integral to Japanese culture and its education system. It all began in 1965 with a dramatic chartered flight that departed Haneda International Airport for America with 102 young and excited Japanese students aboard. Those pioneers broke a key societal barrier among citizens of both nations, paving the way for future generations to explore other nations.

“Knowing that we have had a hand in nurturing so many global citizens, especially between our two countries, is a point of pride that humbles and inspires me,” said Robert E. Fallon, chairman of the CIEE Board of Directors. “Our collaborative work has opened the hearts and minds of Japanese and American students who have studied abroad and experienced life in other cultures. Indeed we have made great progress toward the founding mission of CIEE: to foster world peace and greater understanding between nations. Thank you to the Japanese people and our institutional partners who have contributed to 50 years of CIEE’s success in Japan.”

Over the years, the programs managed by CIEE Japan have steadily expanded, with help and collaboration from the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology, and partner universities. Programs include:

• Providing the first-ever in-service training for Japanese teachers of English;
• Administration/representative of the TOEFL® Test products;
• Management of International Volunteer Projects abroad;
• Study and work abroad opportunities for Japanese students;
• Japanese host programs for American educators and students;
• Hosting programs for international students and volunteers in Japan.

For more information about the experiences of CIEE Japan alumni and partners, and to read notes of congratulations on 50 years, visit http://ciee50.jp/.


CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange today announced that it has awarded the first CIEE Generation Study Abroad Access Grant to Northshore Technical Community College (NTCC). NTCC, based in Louisiana, will use the $20,000 grant to support an innovative faculty-led study abroad program in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. The grant will open doors for NTCC students who have never traveled abroad before or who don’t have the resources to study abroad to participate in an international experience.

Over the semester, NTCC and CIEE’s Faculty-Led and Custom Programs team will work together to create the Northshore Technical Community College Global Maritime Abroad Collaboration (GMAC) program for freshmen and sophomores pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), including industrial maintenance technology, drafting and design, industrial electrician, and welding. The program will focus on providing workforce training and industry credentials that are relevant to NTCC students’ future employment, while also offering intercultural skills training that will help prepare them to enter the global economy following graduation.

“The Global Maritime Abroad Collaboration program is inspired by a progressive and transformative maritime collaboration between our college, our public school system, our regional university, and our maritime advisory consortium. The foundation of this proposal, by design, is centered on advancing global educational pathways that promote mentoring, service-learning, internship, and project-based experiments,” said William Wainwright, Ph.D., chancellor of Northshore Technical Community College. “Through this groundbreaking opportunity with CIEE, meaningful student engagement will lead to earned college credit through a scalable program that will impact our college, our community and technical college system, and our global economy.”

NTCC Provost and Vice Chancellor of Academic Affairs Daniel Roberts, Ph.D., who authored the Global Maritime Abroad Collaboration program proposal, added, “We are very thankful for CIEE and their commitment to funding a customized, faculty-led study abroad program centered on students in workforce pathways. Our students now have the opportunity to experience the global economy firsthand while obtaining their degrees.”

CIEE received nearly 50 proposals from schools across the United States for its inaugural grant. CIEE created the Generation Study Abroad Access Grant to recognize innovative programs that increase access to study abroad, particularly in the areas of science, technology, engineering, and math. The grant program is part of CIEE’s commitment to Generation Study Abroad™, a national challenge initiated by the Institute of International Education to double the number of students studying abroad to 600,000 by the year 2020.

“CIEE is excited to award the first-ever Generation Study Abroad Access Grant to the Northshore Technical Community College. Their program truly supports our goal to recognize innovative programs that increase access to study abroad on every level,” said Kellie Sullivan, director of Faculty-Led and Custom Programs at CIEE. “We know there are many barriers to study abroad, chief among them cost. In addition, community colleges have been traditionally underrepresented in study abroad. By offering Northshore Technical Community College students access to a valuable international educational experience, we’re helping empower a new generation of community college students to engage with diverse cultures, which will ultimately help them to become more effective leaders in today’s globalized world.”

For more information about CIEE’s commitment to Generation Study Abroad, visit: http://www.ciee.org/generation-study-abroad/.



CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange today announced Maritheresa Frain, Ph.D., as its new executive vice president of study abroad.

 Frain brings more than 20 years of experience in international education to her new position, including more than 15 years with CIEE. As executive vice president of study abroad, Frain will lead CIEE’s most comprehensive line of business, which includes 61 study centers in 43 countries around the world.


                                                    Maritheresa Frain - CIEE Executive VP Study Abroad


Frain will be responsible for all aspects of CIEE’s global network of study centers and academic programs, and support of 350 Academic Consortium member schools. 

 Since November 2013, Frain has held the position of vice president of academic affairs, overseeing the academic quality for all of CIEE’s international study abroad programs in 63 cities, research projects in language acquisition and intercultural skill development, and CIEE’s Center for Teaching and Learning. During this time, she has led the newly formed Academic Affairs team to develop Global Learning Objectives that define what students gain by studying abroad with CIEE; designed pre- and post-study abroad testing based on ACTFL standards to analyze student experiences; developed an intercultural communication and leadership class that teaches students how to engage effectively in different cultures; and has worked closely with CIEE’s Academic Consortium Board to build a portfolio of study abroad programs that meet the needs of CIEE member institutions and their students, including by developing a robust offering of new short-term options.

 “Maritheresa is an incredibly talented leader who will bring to CIEE’s consortium of colleges and universities the rare combination of two decades of international program operating experience, a deep knowledge of the academy,  and significant international experience in teaching and research,” stated James P. Pellow, Ed.D., president and chief executive officer of CIEE.

 Previously, Frain served as center director of the CIEE Study Center in Seville, Spain, where she led a team of 23 study abroad professionals and introduced multiple study, international service, and research programs. She developed a portfolio of more than 500 homestay families, and established international gap year, teach abroad, and high school abroad programs. Prior to joining CIEE, she served as consular agent for the U.S. Department of State in Seville, worked for the International Monetary Fund in Washington D.C., and was a visiting professor at Georgetown University. She holds a doctorate and master’s degree in government and international relations from Georgetown University, and a bachelor’s degree in foreign service and international politics from Penn State University.







Today CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange welcomed 111 students from more than 80 U.S. colleges and universities to its new Global Institute in Berlin, Germany.

GIBerlin Building Outside
A 100-year-old former manufacturing factory was converted into CIEE's modern, international Global Institute in Berlin.

With an affordable tuition, a flexible Open Campus curriculum that meets the requirements of most U.S. colleges and universities, and 38 classes taught in English, CIEE’s Global Institute in Berlin makes study abroad more accessible than ever before. The launch comes as the United States continues to lag behind other nations in international academic exchange. According to Open Doors data, 886,000 foreign students came to the United States to study in 2012-2013, three times the 289,000 U.S. students studying abroad during the same time period.

“CIEE’s Global Institute academic model is designed to overcome the primary barriers that prevent too many American students from studying abroad – cost, curriculum, and culture – as it’s financially affordable, academically flexible, and provides students from all backgrounds a supportive learning community,” said James P. Pellow, Ed.D, president and chief executive officer of CIEE. “Berlin is known as the city of reinvention, so it’s the perfect location to introduce flexible, high-quality academic programs that will open doors for students from all socio-economic backgrounds and countless academic majors.”

GIBerlin Gate
The new Global Institute - Berlin is located at 27 Gneisenaustrasse in Kreuzberg, one of Berlin's most diverse neighborhoods.

Students enrolled in the inaugural semester have selected a diverse array of subjects to study that reflect the unique experiences one can have while living in Germany. Nearly one-third are studying German language, literature, and culture. More than one-quarter are taking advantage of studying in Europe’s critical global economy by enrolling in business classes. Still others are pursuing courses in communications, health sciences, and international relations. “The Open Campus program at the Global Institute – Berlin provides students with an unmatched opportunity to intensively study their favorite topics, while also engaging with German society and culture. Instructors work to make each classroom a dynamic learning environment, integrating course content with the full range of study tours, excursions, and cultural activities offered throughout the program,” said John Roper, Ph.D., academic coordinator and core faculty at the Global Institute – Berlin.

Academic credit will transfer to more than 80 different American schools including Arizona State University, Colorado College, Elon University, Gettysburg College, Howard University, Indiana University, Trinity College, University of Kentucky, University of Kansas, and Villanova University.

At the Global Institute, students live and learn in Kreuzberg, one of Berlin’s most culturally diverse and authentic neighborhoods, in an architecturally dynamic facility. CIEE partnered with the renowned New York City design and development group Macro Sea, who identified a former manufacturing factory to convert into CIEE’s first Global Institute. The complex was selected from a pool of 50 different options because of the neighborhood’s rich history in culture, art, and politics. The 100-year-old, five-story factory building was transformed into a modern, international campus with U.S.-style residences, administrative offices, faculty apartments, and a centerpiece courtyard that encourages community building. In fact, the Global Institute will house multiple programs that welcome local Berliners to intermingle with U.S. students. 

GIBerlin Dorms
The Global Institute features U.S.-style residences for American and international students.

“There is a German colloquialism ‘aus der Reihe tanzen,' which literally translates to ‘dance outside the lines.’ There could be no more apt description for this Global Institute concept as we engage new generations of American students who may have dreamed about studying abroad but didn’t know how they could make it a reality,” said Maritheresa Frain, Ph.D., vice president of academic affairs and interim executive vice president, Study Abroad.

Applications for the spring 2016 semester are available online now through November 1. The Global Institute – Berlin is the first of many and will be linked to other CIEE Global Institutes in London and Rome (2016).

CIEE Students Pitch Ideas to the Portland Sea Dogs

Forty high school students from the Baltics got a crash course in international entrepreneurship in Portland, Maine, this summer. As part CIEE’s Global Entrepreneurship program, these students pitched ideas to boost ticket sales for local Double-A affiliate baseball team, the Portland Sea Dogs. The winning concept: a social media plan with an ad campaign on Snapchat.

“About 77 percent of students said they use Snapchat daily. And, when we asked, about 70 percent said they would like to receive promotions on Snapchat from brands they like,” said Justas Jasevicius, a rising high school senior from Lithuania who was part of the winning team.

Other ideas were all-you-can-eat seats and deluxe ticket packages that might include exclusive events.

Read more in the Bangor Daily News.

The Power of Diplomacy and Engagement in Focus at CIEE Civic Leadership Summit

In an effort to increase public diplomacy between the United States and countries around the world, CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange gathered 64 international college and university students from 31 countries in Washington D.C. to learn how to become changemakers during its third annual Civic Leadership Summit, August 3-6.

2015 CIEE Civic Leadership Summit Participants
2015 Civic Leadership Summit Fellows in front of the White House during a tour of Washington D.C.

Held each year at American University’s School of International Service, the Civic Leadership Summit brings together passionate, young leaders from around the world for a dynamic exchange on leadership, social entrepreneurship, and cultural understanding. Summit fellows are all part of the U.S. Department of State Exchange Visitor Program, which provides international students with the opportunity to live and work in the United States during their summer vacations. CIEE is the largest sponsor of the program in the country, bringing nearly 20,000 international students to the United States annually.

Over three days, Summit fellows engaged with experts in the field and shared their unique perspectives on civic leadership, while exploring the nation’s capital. CIEE’s goal is to help these students gain a better understanding of themselves and the United States that they can take back to their home countries.

“CIEE is committed to fostering mutual understanding and peaceful relations between people of the United States and other nations, and the Civic Leadership Summit is an important part of this effort,” said CIEE President and Chief Executive Officer James P. Pellow. “This year, we have fellows from Russia, Ukraine, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Venezuela, and many other countries, learning from one another and exploring ways to make their communities, countries, and regions better places. We’re proud to play a role in building these important relationships among the people of different nations.”

That certainly was the case for Ghadeer Abu-rass, a student from Jordan who worked this summer as a hostess near the Grand Canyon. “I have met people from all over the world, I have been introduced to cultures I never thought I would meet – especially at the Grand Canyon,” she said. “We’ve shared our stories and learned so much from each other. I was even invited to a Navajo rain dance ceremony. I will never forget it."

Civic Leadership Summit Fellows with Robin Lerner
Civic Leadership Summit Fellows Aly Metwaly, Mahmoud Sadek, Ghader Aburass, and Manuel Cedeno with Robin Lerner, deputy assistant secretary for private sector exchange at the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

A highlight of the Summit was a daylong workshop, the Be a Changemaker Challenge, led by Ashoka’s Youth Venture, an organization that inspires and supports teams of young people to launch and lead their own community-benefiting initiatives, clubs, organizations, and businesses. During the Challenge, fellows identified their passions to create change for social issues, and then worked in groups to develop plans for launching their own social ventures in their home countries.

“My Ashoka training got me thinking about things I never thought about,” said Umar Asghar, a student from Pakistan who spent the summer working as a cashier at a Cape Cod supermarket. “Not just thinking about how things can be different. But to understand how to create change and make it happen.”

Other Summit highlights included:

  • A screening of “Girl Rising,” a film created as part of a global action campaign designed to educate and empower girls. The film takes audiences on a journey around the globe to spotlight the stories of unforgettable girls who, despite being born into unforgiving circumstances, follow their dreams, raise their voices, and lead remarkable lives.

  • A session with Street Law, Inc., an international initiative that creates engaging classroom and community programs that teach people about law, democracy, and human rights worldwide.

  • Discussions facilitated by The World Justice Project, an independent, multidisciplinary organization that engages citizens and leaders to advance the rule of law, reducing corruption, combating poverty and disease, and protecting people from injustice.

Civic Leadership Summit fellows are selected based on essays or videos that describe their achievements as a global citizen and what they hope to gain from living and working in the United States. CIEE provides each selected fellow with a fellowship grant to cover the cost of attending the Summit, including travel, accommodations, meals, and activities.