Heiskell Awards: Lone Star College

2014 Heiskell Award Winner: Internationalizing the Community College

Lone Star College System

Faculty International Exploration Award

Photo: Professor Shawn Miller interacting with local people in Sri Lanka during his Faculty International Exploration Award which led to an Accounting-based study abroad program.

Nomination submitted by: Nithy Sevanthinathan, Chief International Officer

Program Overview:  

The Lone Star College System, which serves 90,000 students in the greater Houston area through six full community college campuses and 10 satellite centers, is internationalizing its campuses by engaging the faculty in international exploration. The Faculty International Exploration (FIE) Award offers full-time faculty members the opportunity to conduct research and collect materials abroad with the goal of internationalizing their curriculum and developing study abroad programs. Successful FIE applicants receive up to $4,000 for their proposed explorations. The college has invested approximately $300,000 in the program to date, enabling 61 recipients from 30 disciplines to travel to 45 countries.

The FIE award promotes curriculum internationalization, study abroad program development, and increased student involvement. Resulting programs have broadened students’ career horizons, enriched the annual LSCS International Education Conference, and fostered engagement with the community. Faculty members who received FIE awards advocated for the implementation of a formal process for designating courses with an international perspective. As a result, about 20 course sections taught by FIE faculty have received international designation which can be applied toward an International Studies concentration within the Associate of Arts degree. It has also impacted the growth and diversification of Lone Star College System’s study abroad programs, producing 16 different programs.

Approximately 350 students from a variety of backgrounds, some with need-based scholarships, have taken part in FIE programs in countries such as China, Costa Rica, Italy, the Philippines, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, and the United Kingdom. FIE recipients share their work with colleagues on campus and at discipline conferences as well as at campus events such as the annual LSCS International Education Conference.

Program Implementation:

Read the winning nomination, including details on how the program achieves its objectives

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2014 Awards Presentation
IIE will present the annual IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards for Best Practices in Internationalization at a ceremony in New York City on March 14, 2014, as part of the Annual Best Practices in Internationalization Conference.
Selection Panel Members 2013

The members of the selection panel for this year’s awards include the following leaders in international education:

Arlene Jackson
Director of International Education, American Association of State Colleges & Universities (AASCU)

Janice Thomas
Director, International Education Center, Brookdale Community College

Anne Waters
Associate Vice Provost for Global Programs, New York University

Brian Whalen
President and CEO, The Forum on Education Abroad