2013 Andrew Heiskell Award Winners

NEW YORK, January 28, 2013—The Institute of International Education (IIE) is pleased to announce the winners of the twelfth annual IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards for Innovation in International Education. The awards honor the most outstanding initiatives in international higher education among the member campuses of the IIENetwork, IIE’s membership association of more than 1,100 higher education institutions. IIE will present the awards at a ceremony in New York City on March 22, 2013 as part of its eighth annual Best Practices in Internationalization Conference for campus professionals. More than 150 campus leaders and international education professionals in the United States and around the world attend the conference each year.

IIE’s Heiskell Awards showcase the most innovative and successful models for internationalizing the campus, study abroad, and international partnership programs in practice today, with a particular emphasis on initiatives that remove institutional barriers and broaden the base of participation in international teaching and learning on campus. This year’s awards will recognize five initiatives that are being conducted by ten campuses.

The winning campuses for 2013 are: Susquehanna University (Winner – Internationalizing the Campus); Pitt Community College (Winner – Internationalizing the Community College); St. Cloud State University (Winner – International Partnerships, for their partnership with the Universidad de Concepción); University of South Florida (Honorable Mention – International Partnerships, for their partnership program with the University of Ghana and the University of Cape Coast); Wake Forest University (Winner – Study Abroad); University of Pittsburgh (Honorable Mention – Study Abroad) and Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, La Trobe University (Australia), Saint Louis University and Shoreline Community College (Special Recognition – Internationalizing the Professions).

During the twelve years that it has presented the Heiskell Awards, IIE has recognized nearly 100 programs that promote international education on IIENetwork member campuses. Leaders from this year’s award winning campuses will present at the Best Practices Conference in March so that international education practitioners can learn from their experience and adapt their innovative internationalization strategies and models to their own campuses.

“The 2013 IIE Heiskell Awards recognize some of the best initiatives in internationalizing higher education,” says IIE President and CEO Dr. Allan E. Goodman. “This year’s winners have developed new approaches to extending more international opportunities to a broader segment of their student populations. We appreciate the winners’ commitment to expanding access to study abroad and building partnerships, and we are pleased to recommend these programs as models for other campuses to learn from as they plot their own internationalization strategies. The IIE Heiskell Awards are designed to strengthen international education in the United States and around the world.”

The members of the Selection Panel for the 2013 IIE Heiskell Awards include international education leaders from a diverse range of organizations: 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.

The IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards were named for Andrew Heiskell, a former chairman of Time Inc. and a long-time member of the Executive Committee of IIE’s Board of Trustees. Mr. Heiskell was a renowned international and cultural philanthropist and a dedicated supporter of international education.

For profiles of the Heiskell Award winning programs from 2013 and all of the initiatives that have been recognized since they were first awarded in 2002, visit IIE’s Best Practices Resource.

Brief descriptions of the 2013 winning initiatives follow.

2013 IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards for Innovation in International Education
Winners and Honorable Mention Recipients by Award Category

Internationalizing the Campus

Winner: Susquehanna University, Global Opportunities (GO)

The Global Opportunities (GO) program, a centerpiece of Susquehanna University’s recently revised Central (core) Curriculum, requires every student to have an off-campus immersion experience of at least two weeks, followed by a credit-bearing critical reflection on that experience once they are back on campus. Susquehanna is among only a handful of schools to mandate a study-away experience for all students, and it goes even further by requiring a post-travel course in which students reflect on how that experience changed them. Students receive credit for this innovative coursework, which includes class discussions, performances and creative writing, and centers around cross-cultural learning goals such as understanding and recognizing ethnocentrism. With the Global Opportunities program in place, 100 percent of Susquehanna students have an off-campus study experience, up from 30 percent three years ago. The university has further internationalized its campus by enrolling more international students—a 35 percent increase in the past year alone—and adding essential services such as a scholar-mentor program that trains juniors and seniors as mentors to help international students in adjusting to their new home.

Study Abroad

Winner: Wake Forest University, Project MAAP (Magnolia Abroad Access Program)

Wake Forest University’s Project MAAP (Magnolia Abroad Access Program) is a collaboration between the university’s Center for International Studies and the Magnolia Scholars Program for first-generation college students. It connects Magnolia scholars with individualized advising and additional financial support as they navigate the study abroad process. The program is designed to assist students from start to finish and begins with helping them to realize that study abroad can be the most transformational experience for an undergraduate and that all students stand to benefit from such an experience. Project MAAP aims to address many of the barriers that currently prevent first-generation students from studying abroad, such as finances, academic fit, reservations from family and friends, and fear of the unknown. The program provides multi-faceted support by providing financial resources as well as additional support via passport workshops, targeted scholarships and parental outreach and interaction, with the goal of making study abroad a reality for students facing perhaps the greatest obstacles.

Honorable Mention: University of Pittsburgh, The Vira I. Heinz Program for Women in Global Leadership

The Vira I. Heinz Program for Women in Global Leadership (VIH) prepares women for tomorrow’s global challenges by combining study abroad, leadership development, and community service. The program explicitly targets a diverse mix of women who have never been abroad. Three women each from 15 institutions across Pennsylvania are admitted into this two-year program created and administered by the University of Pittsburgh. The participants receive scholarship support to defray the costs of an international experience. VIH uses the study abroad experience, training retreats, mentoring, and a community engagement project as tools to develop critical leadership skills.

International Partnerships

Winner: St. Cloud State University, Partnership with Universidad de Concepción

St. Cloud State University and the Universidad de Concepción, located in Concepción, Chile, began a relationship in 2001 that has expanded into a multi-dimensional strategic partnership that has made major contributions to the curricular and co-curricular experiences of students from both institutions in the past 11 years. The program has attracted the financial and training support of a major health provider in Minnesota, and the two partner universities have developed programs to engage faculty and students in the social sciences, languages, the sciences, nursing and education.  For example, American nursing students focused on Spanish language acquisition head to Chile to serve their Chilean clients in public health facilities in Concepción, while nursing students from Chile come to SCSU to take courses, to intern at CentraCare Health System, and to provide public health support to local Hispanic community NGO’s. Another key outcome is the creation of a relationship between the State of Minnesota and the VIII Region (Bío-Bío) of the Republic of Chile.

Honorable Mention: University of South Florida, Ghana Scholars Program

The Ghana Scholars Program promotes the exchange of ideas, scholarship and culture between the University of South Florida (USF) and its partner universities in Ghana, the University of Ghana and the University of Cape Coast. The program contributes to the professional development of Ghana’s educators and to the internationalization of the USF campus. USF hosts Ghanaian faculty who are working on their dissertation during a sabbatical from their teaching responsibilities at their home universities. The visiting faculty members engage in research collaborations, participate in professional development and leadership training, and experience culture at a major research-oriented university in the United States. These research collaborations often incorporate students from the partner institutions, thus providing an international experience to student researchers in the U.S. and in Ghana. This exposure and experience at a major university in the U.S proves not only vital for the individual scholars at a critical stage in their academic careers but also to building capacity at their home institutions when the scholars return to Ghana.

Internationalizing the Community College

Winner: Pitt Community College, International Education Travel Scholarship (IETS)

The International Education Travel Scholarship (IETS) provides full funding for participation in a Pitt Community College Abroad-sanctioned program and seeks to eliminate financial barriers for students and faculty recipients. The goal is to provide a study abroad experience to students who are eligible but are held back by financial constraints. Students become ambassadors for education abroad via two major scholarship requirements: they complete a community and college sharing plan, requiring students to find a creative way to share their experience with college and community members who did not have the opportunity to travel abroad, and they write a letter to the Global Education committee and college administration, detailing how their experience has affected them academically, professionally, and personally. This program has helped internationalize the Pitt campus by granting faculty the opportunity to travel with the help of these scholarships.

Special Recognition: Internationalizing the Professions

Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University, Air Traffic Management

The Study Abroad Air Traffic Management Program (ATM) is a comprehensive program designed as a comparative research study for ATM students to understand the differences and similarities between the US and European AirTraffic Control systems. The program allows an entire department of students to be able to go abroad within their chosen degree program to learn how their future profession operates in other countries.

La Trobe University, Australia, Oral Health in Nepal

The Oral Health Promotion Training Centre in Dhangadi West, Nepal is a three year project established in 2010 to provide opportunities for Australian students to provide community education in Nepal about oral health and its role in the prevention of diseases, such as cancer, and more commonly dental decay and associated pain. As part of the oral health program at La Trobe University, students may participate in a two week placement at the center. The program is based on the philosophy “if you can’t afford prevention, how can you afford disease.”

Saint Louis University, Nursing with International Preparation

In 2003, Saint Louis University launched an International Nursing Program at its Madrid, Spain, campus, offering courses that help fulfill the degree requirements for SLU’s Bachelor of Science in Nursing. Opening international study to nursing students at SLU, the program allows both U.S. and international students work on their nursing degrees for two years in Madrid, then transfer to the SLU campus in St. Louis, Mo., for their last two years of study. Clinical experience in Spanish hospitals and clinics is integrated into the program, as are specialized courses to develop cultural sensitivity and Spanish language acquisition.

Shoreline Community College, Dental Hygiene Education/Smiles Forever

The Dental Hygiene Education/Smiles Forever (DHESF) program, in partnership with Smiles Forever Dental Hygiene School in Cochabamba, Bolivia, affords U.S. participants an opportunity to experience working with the only dental hygiene school in Bolivia. Smiles Forever offers indigenous Bolivian women an opportunity to learn dental hygiene skills, therefore allowing them to support themselves and their families while offering dental services where there is tremendous need. Participants from the U.S. were able to see the impact of social, economic, political and environmental forces that determine the quality of life and the oral health for people in impoverish communities.


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