Policy Monitor Weekly Digest

A new report by the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and its Commission on Language Learning offers an examination of the current state U.S. language education, as well as five key capacity-building recommendations for improving access to it. According to Section 4 of the report, the United States should “promote opportunities for students to travel, experience other cultures, and learn languages in other countries by immersing themselves in multilingual environments.”

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The Alliance for International Exchange, in partnership with the Graduate School USA, the Institute of International Education, and AFS-USA, participated in Global Ties U.S.’ 2017 Strategic Dialogue on Wednesday February 8. The Dialogue addressed the current and future state of the transatlantic relationship through the lens of international exchange.

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The Institute of International Education (IIE) recently announced the winners of the annual IIE Andrew Heiskell Awards for Innovation in International Education. Each year, IIE selects five campuses from over 1,300 higher education institutions as award recipients, in recognition of their efforts in internationalizing campuses, study abroad, and international partnership programs. IIE also announced a new award category for minority-serving institutions that have strived to enhance global understanding.

The 2017 winners for the different categories are as follows:

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After approval in both Chambers of Congress last week, President Barack Obama signed into law an FY 2017 continuing resolution (CR) that will keep the government funded until April 28, 2017, at the fiscal cap of $1.07 trillion, CQ.com reported. The legislation allocates a total of “$58.8 billion for the International Affairs Budget, an increase of $4.2 billion (8%) above FY16 levels”, according to the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.

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U.S. colleges and universities, along with prospective international students interested in applying to these institutions, are expressing concern about studying in the United States under the incoming presidential administration, according to a recent New York Times article.

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The number of international students enrolled in U.S. colleges and universities has reached a record number of over one million, according to 2016 Open Doors data released this week by the Institute of International Education (IIE). This 7.1 percent increase for the 2015-2016 school year marks the tenth consecutive year of reported expansion in the total number of international students in U.S. higher education.

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Ireland announced a new international education strategy last week in order to boost international student and English Language Teaching (ELT) enrollments over the next four years by 15 and 25%, respectively.

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U.S. Senators Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Roger Wicker (R-MS) re-introduced the Senator Paul Simon Study Abroad Program Act, a bipartisan legislation that would expand opportunities for students at U.S. colleges and universities to obtain study abroad experiences through the U.S. Department of Education.

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The U.S. Advisory Commission on Public Diplomacy (USACPD) today released its 2016 Comprehensive Annual Report on Public Diplomacy and International Broadcasting Actives, detailing roughly $1.8 billion in programs worldwide. The report offers analysis, research and evaluation, policy recommendations, regional overviews, and country-specific spotlights for a host of public diplomacy and international broadcasting programs, including Department of State exchanges.

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Applauding the administration’s recent announcement to resettle 110,000 refugees in the U.S. next year, NAFSA: Association of International Educators urges the administration to ensure refugees who seek higher education opportunities have a path to do so.

In a letter to President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, Marlene Johnson, Executive Director and CEO of NAFSA states:

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