IIE Generation Study Abroad | IIE & Study Abroad

IIE & Study Abroad

The 1920s

University of Delaware Students studying abroad in Spain, 1920s

  • 1922: First IIE Reciprocal Student Exchange Program initiated between the U.S. and Czechoslovakia
  • 1923: Inaugurates an international exchange program between the U.S. and Great Britain, inviting debating teams from Oxford and Cambridge to visit American and Canadian colleges and universities.
  • 1924: Steamship lines install Student Third Class passage as a result of IIE advocacy.
  • 1927: Organizes a committee to supervise Junior Year Abroad scholarships and encourages the expansion of the Junior Year Abroad.
  • 1929: Administers more than 250 Fellowships for U.S. and foreign students worth almost a quarter of a million dollars

The 1930s

IIE Grantees from Barnard in the 1930s

  • 1930: Twenty American students receive grants to study at the Institute of Art and Archaeology in Paris in the first arts exchange program developed by the Institute.
  • 1934: Sponsors a Summer Institute in Soviet Civilization at Moscow University for American students.
  • 1935: Created the framework for Latin America-U.S. student and faculty exchanges through the Convention for the Promotion of Inter-American Cultural Relations.
  • 1936: American-Chinese Student Exchange established by the Institute, making it the first IIE study abroad opportunity for Americans in Asia.

The 1940s

President Truman and Senator Fulbright

  • 1947:  IIE and CIES asked by U.S. Government to administer the Fulbright Educational Exchange Program.
  • Also, in 1947 arranges for more than 4,000 Americans to go to Europe to aid in reconstruction.

The 1950s

  • 1957:  Surveys 1,298 colleges and universities on the subject of undergraduate study abroad, and publishes the findings in Foreign Study for U.S. Undergraduates, which continue as the annual publications "Academic Year Abroad" and "Short Term Study Abroad." U.S. Fulbright Students in Germany, 1950s




The 1960s

In the 1960s, the number of U.S. university sponsored study abroad programs increased exponentially. IIE formed partnerships with academic leaders to establish standards for effective programs.

The 1970s

1971: Under Project City Streets, IIE provides exchange opportunities for members of U.S. minority groups. Programs are developed for the Puerto Rican community of New York City and summer study opportunities are made available for Native American leaders to travel to Israel and focus on the kibbutz system and small scale industry in arid regions.

The 1980s

• 1986:  IIE and the Soviet Ministry of Education sign a letter of intent to negotiate an agreement for an exchange of U.S. and U.S.S.R. undergraduates. The following year, the first U.S.-U.S.S.R. student exchange takes place under joint sponsorship of the Institute and the Soviet State Committee for Public Education.

• 1987: International, a nonprofit organization dedicated to improving the quality and increasing the quantity of international exchanges in the literary, performing, and visual arts, merges into IIE.

The 1990s

• 1990: IIE also joined the Council for International Educational Exchange (CIEE) and NAFSA: Association of International Educators to convene a National Task Force on Undergraduate Education Abroad. Its report, A National Mandate for Education Abroad: Getting on with the Task, calls for integrating foreign study into regular degree programs and assuring that at least 10 percent of U.S. undergraduates study abroad. Fewer than 2 percent do so now.

• 1992: Chosen to administer new U.S. government initiatives, including a USAID-funded program for MBA students to learn and serve in developing countries.

• 1993: Selected for the administration of the undergraduate portion of the new National Security Education Program, aimed at strengthening the international competence of U.S. citizens.

• 1997: The Japan Fulbright Memorial Fund (JFMF) Teacher Program was established to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Fulbright Program. Fully funded by the Government of Japan and administered by the Japan Fulbright Memorial Fund office of the Japan-United States Educational Commission (JUSEC), the program provided American primary and secondary school teachers and administrators with short-term study tours of Japan. IIE was the contracting agency that coordinated promotion, application processing, preliminary selection, and pre-departure arrangements.

The 2000s

Brianna Moland

  • From 2001 to 2009:  Freeman-ASIA (Freeman Awards for Study in Asia) supported over 4,000 U.S. undergraduates, with demonstrated financial need, from more than 600 institutions with their study abroad plans in East and Southeast Asia. The program’s goal was to increase the number of Americans with first-hand exposure to and understanding of Asia and its peoples and cultures.
  • 2001:  The Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program was initiated to diversify the kinds of students who study abroad and the countries and regions where they go.
  • 2000- 2012: The Flinn Scholars Summer Seminar, organized by IIE’s European Office in Budapest, was a short-term study abroad experience in Central & Eastern Europe.  The program, sponsored by the Flinn A Student Guide to Study Abroad 2013Foundation, is a component of the Flinn Scholars Program, which provides full scholarships for four-year degree programs offered through Arizona's public university system.
  • Also in 2001, IIE created the Andrew Heiskell Awards For Innovation in International Education to promote and honor the most outstanding initiatives being conducted in international higher education by IIENetwork member universities and colleges.
  • 2013:  published A Student Guide to Study Abroad with AIFS and co-author Stacie Berdan.

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