Colorado State University was named today as one of the winners of the prestigious Andrew Heiskell Awards for innovation in international education at the Institute of International Education in New York City.
Colorado State was awarded top honors in the faculty category for its international development studies faculty mentoring program developed by Alicia Skinner Cook, professor of human development and family studies, and Martha Denney, director of International Education.
In announcing the awards today, IIE president Allan E. Goodman said, "The Heiskell Awards celebrate and encourage the most outstanding initiatives being conducted by IIE Network member campuses to increase international educational exchange and global awareness on campus."
The program, initially developed through a grant from the U.S. Department of Education, pairs Colorado State faculty with ongoing international development projects. Twelve faculty members from four colleges and nine academic departments have participated in the program since its inception two years ago. Faculty members spent up to three weeks in countries such as Azerbaijan, Belize, Brazil, Chile, Kenya and Tanzania providing their professional skills to contribute to needs-based projects. Their varied activities included conducting a hands-on science workshop using indigenous materials, designing a needs assessment instrument for an AIDS orphan project and consulting on gender studies curriculum at a community college. Eight additional faculty members currently are working on projects for next year.
"Colorado State University has a long history of involvement in international assistance projects," Cook said. "Our university is consistently among the top 12 universities in terms of alumni entering the Peace Corp each year, and in 1999 our institution implemented a new international development studies certificate program at both the graduate and undergraduate levels."
As part of the program, faculty revised existing Colorado State courses and created new ones to correlate with what they learned during their international experiences. The project integrated faculty development with curriculum enhancement across academic departments and developed international internships for undergraduates, leading to student enrichment as well.
"Faculty participating in the program have been key players in the establishment and implementation of international internships for our students," Denney said. "Our approach emphasizes the central role of foreign language and culture learning in preparing for international careers and links faculty from diverse departments together in meaningful ways."
The Heiskell Awards are named in honor of noted publisher and philanthropist Andrew Heiskell, the former CEO and chairman of Time Inc. and longtime advocate for international education.
The IIE created the awards to promote and honor the most outstanding initiatives that are being conducted in international education by member universities and colleges.
The winning program in each of the three award categories will receive a $1,000 prize, will be featured in the spring 2003 IIE Networker magazine and highlighted by IIE as one of the best practices in the international education field throughout the year.
For more information, the Institute launched a Web site today – www.iienetwork.org – to showcase the winning programs and as a resource for the international educational community worldwide.