International Programs hosts 90 Fulbrighters and others during busy and productive summer

Thanks to successful efforts to expand Wayne State’s presence around the world, the Office of International Programs (OIP) will welcome 90 Fulbright scholars Aug. 6 for a four-day orientation that will help prepare them for their upcoming year of study at universities throughout the United States.

OIP applied for and was selected to host orientation by the Institute of International Education, which administers the Fulbright Scholar Program, the flagship academic exchange effort on behalf of the U.S. Department of State.

Seminars, workshops and networking with local Fulbright alumni are all part of the Gateway Orientation that will prepare them for university life in America, classroom culture and their roles as ambassadors for their home countries. Social gatherings and visits to local cultural institutions that highlight WSU’s unique urban environment are planned.

Colombian students from Universidad Externado
Students from WSU and Universidad Externado 
Engineering students from China
Engineering students decorating tiles at Pewabic 

This summer, OIP has hosted academic delegations from Colombia, Iraq, Japan and China. In fact, as the Fulbrighters arrive, Chinese engineering undergrads (right) are beginning their final week of a special summer program held in cooperation with the College of Engineering.

Expanding its partnerships in South America, OIP collaborated with Bogota’s Universidad Externado (left) for a June/July exchange that offered students from the two institutions a unique comparative learning experience exploring the social parallels between Detroit and Bogota. The program is funded by a grant the universities received from MetLife Foundation through the 100,000 Strong in the Americas Innovation Fund.

For the second year, the university was chosen by World Learning to host a four-day orientation session in July for the Iraq Young Leaders Exchange Program, a monthlong exchange sponsored and funded by the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad.  As with the Gateway Orientation for Fulbrighters, the university provided students their first glimpse of America and university life before they moved on to campuses across the country to learn about leadership development, civic rights and responsibilities, respect for diversity, and community engagement.

Visiting students from Japan
Visiting students from Japan

While the university is welcoming international visitors, hundreds of Warriors have headed out into classrooms around the globe this summer.

The Office of Study Abroad and Global Programs staff has been assisting 145 of them in earning course credits by participating in short-term summer study experiences in countries including Mexico, Ghana, Lebanon, Korea, France, Italy and China. At the same time, the staff is helping finalize the details for 43 exchange students expected to arrive this fall for classes.

Study Abroad Program Coordinator Lisa Kyle says there has been an upswing in international studies that she attributes to coordinated efforts with academic advisors to promote programs early in the fall semester so that students have several months of planning, raising the necessary funds and applying for scholarships to help cover trip costs.

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The Office of International Programs leads Wayne State’s global engagement by creating opportunities that foster international education and research, facilitate the exchange of individuals and ideas that promote global competencies and citizenship, and provide resources that support the expansion of the university’s global agenda. Follow us on Twitter @WayneOIP.

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