Close friend to the School of International Studies, Dr Teravuti Boonyasopon was inducted into the OSU Alumni Association’s Hall of Fame, September 22nd. While at OSU, SIS’s Interim Associate Director, Dr Steve Miller, hosted Dr Boonyasopon. IEO Director, Dr James Hromas, and Dr Miller have taken several trips to Thailand to foster OSU’s relationship with Thailand and specifically with Dr Boonyasopon. In January, Dr Hromas had the rare privilege, after presenting an OSU plate to the princess of Thailand, to shake the princess’s hand. In the past year, Dr Boonyasopon’s daughter Ink has worked to develop an OSU-Thai webpage (ieo.okstate.edu/thai) to recruit more students from Thailand as well as maintain contact with the many OSU Thai alumni. Interestingly, at one time, three university presidents in Thailand were OSU Alumni.
The School of International Studies held an appreciation luncheon September 20th
to recognize the recent contribution of Ethiopian artifacts. Ms. Lou Ann Skinner
and Mrs. Vera Preston-Jaeger have given items to SIS to be displayed in the
cabinet outside the Wes Watkins Center’s Point Four Room that commemorates OSU’s
ties with Ethiopia. Skinner’s father Ralph Skinner was one of original members
of the OSU-Ethiopia Project. Preston-Jaeger’s grandfather Henry G. Bennett was
the legendary OSU president appointed by US President Harry S. Truman to head
Truman's new national Point Four Program. One of Point Four’s (now USAID) first
projects was the contribution of OSU faculty members to help the developing
nation of Ethiopia from 1952-68 in establishing a land grant agricultural
education system similar to OSU’s. Those is attendance at the luncheon included
Former US Congressman Wes Watkins and his wife, Lou, the current Chair of the
OSU Board of Regents; Don Wagner, the last active OSU faculty member who was
part of the OSU-Ethiopia project, Conrad & Joy Evans, SIS Bennett Fellows
and OSU-Ethiopia Project members, and Paul Bass, who recently wrote a biography
of Henry G. Bennett entitled No Little Dreams.
The School of International Studies joined the Department of Agriculture Sciences & Natural Resources (DASNR) on September 17th to sign a Memorandum of Understanding between OSU and the University of Bamako of Mali, Africa. The agreement stems from a project awarded to DASNR by the US Department of State to help Malian journalists “understand, acquire, and practice professional standards in their work”. Trips between and OSU and Mali were made to Mali in March and to the US in July. The School of International Studies is housed in the Wes Watkins Center, which provides the perfect venue for such agreements to be signed. The Watkins Center’s Point IV Room is dedicated to the efforts of OSU’s legendary president Henry G. Bennett who led US President Harry S. Truman’s Point IV initiative (now USAID) which sought to establish relationships between US and foreign universities to share the US’s knowledge. The Point IV Room was the venue for Monday’s signing. For more information about DASNR’s efforts with Mali, click here...
On Friday, September 14th, OSU’s OSU - Mexico Liaison Office celebrated its one year anniversary as well as celebrated Mexico’s Independence Day. José Sagarnaga, the manager of the office, visiting Stillwater for meetings, hosted the evening’s festivities. Approximately 100 people from the university and community were on hand for the celebrations. In addition, university officials from Chihuahua Mexico’s campus of Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey (ITESM), who were visiting with OSU faculty and the School of International Studies about an exchange program next summer, attended the party. Mr. Sagarnaga and the graduate students assisting him were extremely pleased with the positive turnout. For more information about the OSU-Mexico Liaison Office click here…
On September 12th, the School of International Studies joined with Oklahoma’s Secretary of State’s office in hosting a delegation of students from Kyoto, Japan. The students were here to visit Oklahoma, which has a sister state relationship with Kyoto. Stillwater has a sister city relationship with Kameoka, Japan, which is in the Kyoto prefecture. While on the Stillwater part of their state visit, the students toured the OSU campus, met and discussed world issues with students in SIS, and visited with members of Stillwater’s Sister City Council. In previous years, Oklahoma former Lieutenant Governor and current US Congresswoman Mary Fallin has taken a delegation of students, including several SIS students, to Japan to visit the Kyoto prefecture. This was the first year that a delegation from Kyoto came to Oklahoma.
B. Curtis Hamm, OSU Professor Emeritus of Marketing, became an Ambassador for the School of International Studies earlier this fall for his financial contribution to the school. Ambassadors for the School are designated as those individuals who contribute $1000 or more per year to the School. The School will hold its first annual meeting of The Ambassadors on December 14th in conjunction with the SIS Fall Graduation Ceremony. For more information about the Ambassador Program or to become an Ambassador for the School, you can contact Jim Shideler at 405.744.4804 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
On August 29th, the School of International Studies hosted a reception for Sharon Sugarek of the Peace Corps’ regional office in Dallas. Sugarek came to OSU to present the Master’s International Program in SIS with a certificate commemorating the MI Program’s 20th anniversary, nationally. Three years ago, the School of International Studies added the Master’s International Program as a component of its graduate program. In the MI Program, students enroll in a year of coursework in International Studies and then do their two-year service in the Peace Corps. Upon completion of their Peace Corps service, students receive their Master’s degree. Since it began as a part of SIS, 22 students have entered the program. Currently, three have completed the program, ten are on their Peace Corps assignment, and nine are enrolled in their coursework in International Studies. The internationally diverse environment of SIS gives students wanting to go into the Peace Corps a real world, global experience before they go into the field. OSU’s Graduate College has been instrumental in the success of the MI Program in SIS because of the financial incentives it provides for out-of-state students. Currently, the nine MI students in the program are from states as far reaching as Alaska, New York, Georgia, and California. For more information about the MI Program, click here…
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