“Brilliant, fearless, and passionate” is how Suzanne Philion, Senior Advisor for Innovation at the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA), described the Department of State’s inaugural class of 25 TechGirls from the Middle East and North Africa, who arrived in the U.S. in late June.
Despite his pessimism about the state of U.S. development, political discourse, and public governance, Elliot Gerson, an executive vice president at the Aspen Institute, has at least one reason to feel hope: the ever-increasing number of young Americans who are studying, traveling, and living abroad. Writing in The Atlantic, Gerson argues that all Americans—but especially young Americans—must continue to go outside our borders and “benchmark” against the rest of the world—that is, not only learn about other countries and peoples, but also learn from them in order to make the U.S. stronger:
Study abroad does not necessarily delay the time of graduation, new studies cited by Inside Higher Ed show. While international educators have traditionally tried to quantify the impact of study abroad on international learning outcomes such as “global-mindedness” or foreign language acquisition, they now focus increasingly on the link between study abroad experience, retention, and graduation rates.
As the U.S. is increasingly internationalizing its campuses, more needs to be done to “capture the educational moments in international education,” such as integrating international students on U.S. campuses and encouraging American students to study abroad in less traditional destinations, World Learning President and CEO Adam Weinberg suggests in a recent Huffington Post blog post.
Today’s generation of young adults in their 20s and early 30s is more likely than previous generations to spend time abroad and is “abandoning some of the traditional tenets of the American dream that their parents held dear” to pursue an American dream that goes “beyond U.S. borders,” according to a recent NPR report.
In a video message recorded on the occasion of the third EducationUSA Forum, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton once more underlined the importance of bringing international students to the United States for study and the critical work of the EducationUSA Advising Centers in more than 170 across the globe.
Many international students struggle to form friendships with Americans while studying in the U.S., a new survey cited in the Chronicle of Higher Education found.
Studying abroad provides graduate students with “worlds of marketable skills,” according to a recent article published in the Washington Post’s ExpressNightOut.
The article argues that while “studying abroad can be a transformative experience for any student, … it can have more of an impact on grad students, who are more focused academically.”
The Obama Administration’s strong rhetoric in support of international education and exchange does not always match with reality, and is described by some to be “superficial,” according to an article in yesterday’s Chronicle of Higher Education:
While some of the statistics were grim (e.g., only 8 per cent of U.S. undergraduates study a foreign language, half of what it was in 1965), hope for the future was abundant as students, teachers, and international education leaders testified yesterday at a hearing titled “A National Security Crisis: Foreign Language Capabilities in the Federal Government.” That hopefulness seemed to culminate with the testimony of Shauna Kaplan, a 5th grader at Providence Elementary School in Fairfax County, Virginia, who confidently spoke to hearing chair Sen. Daniel Akaka (D-HI) in Chinese and neatly offered a call to action by proclaiming, in her second language: