IFLE Newsletter - August 2016

US Department of Education Newsletter

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From the Deputy Assistant Secretary's Desk

IFLE Deputy Assistant Secretary Mohamed Abdel-Kader

Dear friends,


I hope this reaches you in the best of health and spirits – and I hope you’ve taken some time this summer to unwind. My team has had a busy few weeks!


We are currently in the midst of several grant competitions -- for the Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Languages (USIFL), American Overseas Research Centers (AORC), and Group Projects Abroad (GPA) programs -- and we’re excited to celebrate our next round of awardees!


This summer, our Seminars Abroad program supported 48 U.S. educators as they participated in short-term study and travel seminars in Senegal, India, and Peru. You can read more about this great program in the next story below.


Cultural and Global Competencies Convening at ED

On July 28, the Department of Education hosted a convening (left) of P-16 educators, policymakers, and colleagues from national associations to discuss a framework for developing cultural and global competencies in U.S. students. A joint initiative of the International and Foreign Language Education (IFLE) Office and the Office of International Affairs (OIA), this event was an opportunity for participants to collaborate to guide the formation of a toolkit for educators and administrators to be released by the Department. On a personal note, it was wonderful to see so many colleagues come out for the event, and it was a reminder of how deeply this community cares about preparing our students to succeed in a globalized world.



Finally, a quick note for the fall - September 21st marks the 55th anniversary of the signing of the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act (or Fulbright-Hays Act as it is commonly called). At the same time, we observe the 70th anniversary of the Fulbright program. We'll be sending out more information about the Fulbright-Hays anniversary celebration in the coming weeks, so stay tuned!

Thank you again for all you do to advance global learning in your classrooms, on your campuses, and in your communities. We hope you’ll enjoy your last few weeks of summer!


Best wishes,


Mohamed Abdel-Kader

Deputy Assistant Secretary, International & Foreign Language Education

U.S. Department of Education



U.S. Educators Study Abroad with Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad Program

Seminars Abroad Group in Senegal

The 2016 Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad program supported 48 U.S. educators as they traveled to India, Peru, and Senegal this summer. This program provides short-term study and travel seminars abroad for K-16 social sciences and humanities educators for the purpose of improving their understanding and knowledge of the people and cultures of other countries.


Four Weeks in Senegal

In May, sixteen faculty members from U.S. colleges and universities (above) traveled to Senegal for four weeks, participating in educational lectures and activities specifically designed for the program, entitled "Religion and Diversity in West Africa."


During their time in Senegal, participants learned about the country's educational system first-hand through visits to University of Ziguinchor and University Gaston Berger, where they met with educators, students, government officials, and public policy experts. The faculty members also learned about Senegalese history, arts, religion, and culture through visits to women’s non-governmental organizations, Mouride Mosque, Djoudj National Bird Sanctuary, the Grand Mosque of Dakar, Cathedral of Dakar, and Goree Island. In addition, the group toured cultural sites in Dakar, Toubacouta, Djilor, Goree, Saint-Louis, Ziguinchor, and Cap Skirring.



Now that they have returned to the United States, participants will use their experiences in Senegal to develop new, cross-cultural curricula for their courses. They will share what they have learned with their own students, institutions, and colleagues throughout the country.

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Fulbright-Hays Alumni Group on LinkedIn

Fulbright-Hays Alumni Group on LinkedIn


IFLE recently created a LinkedIn group for Fulbright-Hays Program Alumni. This group is a place where alumni of the following programs can connect:

  • Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad (DDRA) Fellowships Program
  • Group Projects Abroad (GPA) Program
  • Seminars Abroad Program
  • Faculty Research Abroad (FRA) Program

In addition, the group will help IFLE track and gather more detailed outcome data on the ways in which Fulbright-Hays grants have long-lasting impact. Please share this invitation and link with any current or former Fulbright-Hays grant recipients you know! 

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Stanford NRCs Work with Community Colleges to Globalize Curricula

Community college faculty at the 2016 EPIC symposium

"In today's global information landscape, there are haves and there are have-nots. There's a lot of inequity," explained Stephanie Roach, Assistant Professor and Digital Resources Librarian at the College of San Mateo.


This past year, Roach and eight other faculty from Bay Area community colleges participated in a fellowship program to help integrate global topics into their course materials. This program is organized by the Education Partnership to Internationalize Curriculum (EPIC) at Stanford University and supported by three U.S. Department of Education Title VI National Resource Centers (NRC) at Stanford: the Center for East Asian Studies, the Center for Latin American Studies, and the Center for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies.


Now, students in Roach's research course explore global forces that impact decision-making and access to information and knowledge. "As I teach research strategy, I strive to raise awareness about the global knowledge society and information privilege," Roach says. "I'm working to transform research and information instruction for my students."


In May, over 75 community college faculty and administrators from across California convened to hear about the EPIC fellowship program projects and discuss innovative techniques to prepare students for a world that is rapidly changing and becoming more interconnected by the day.

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38th "Study Canada" Summer Institute a Success

K-12 STUDY CANADA Summer Institute

The Title VI Canada National Resource Center at the University of Washington and Western Washington University offered its 38th annual "STUDY CANADA Summer Institute for K-16 Educators" from June 27 to July 1, 2016. The institute is designed to provide a foundation for teaching about the United States' vital political, economic, environmental, and cultural relationships with Canada. Participating teachers learn about core social studies topics related to Canada (including geography, history, government, economics) from university faculty and other experts, and outcomes include gaining global perspectives on civic issues, receiving numerous resources for classroom use, and developing curricula that meet Common Core, C3 Social Studies Framework, and state standards.


Nineteen K-16 teachers participated in this year's institute. Educators benefitted from curriculum development sessions, lectures, walking tours of downtown Seattle and Victoria, B.C., and educational visits to the Space Needle, the Klondike Gold Rush National Park, the Royal B.C. Museum and the B.C. Legislative Assembly. 


The 2016 teacher group represented 12 different states across the United States and a broad range of teaching levels. Lesson plans developed through the institute will be posted on the STUDY CANADA website in October.

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FLAS Student Travels the New (and Old) Streets of Beijing

FLAS recipient Nicholas Steele

Nicholas Steele, a University of Washington undergraduate in International Studies, was awarded a Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship to study Chinese in Beijing this summer.  He is spending the summer “exploring the old and new city, building friendships, and only speaking Mandarin.”


He writes, “I have gotten to know Beijing through the eyes of cab drivers. I’ve been learning, from the men who live and work in the city, that the texture of life here is unbound from the past. The idea of change, the familiarity of transformation, is intuitive for these cab drivers: men who once drove through empty roads now shepherd American students on crowded highways. They navigate through a metropolis built, and rebuilt, every few years; where dirt roads that lead to remnants of another era bisect six-lane avenues. Conversations with Beijing cab drivers have given poignancy to my stay this summer. It is not only because each conversation is the result of an expanding vocabulary, from weeks spent studying Mandarin at a local university. But also, the act of being a passenger and seeing the city unfold–road by road, cab upon cab.”

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Overseas Programs for Faculty and Professionals

CIBER Faculty Development in International Business Programs



IFLE's Title VI Centers for International Business Education (CIBEs) organize a number of programs each year to help faculty develop their knowledge and skills in international and sustainable business. The CIBER network is offering a variety of programs for 2017. Visit their website for more information.

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Teach to Lead Summit in Washington, D.C.

Teach to Lead Summit 2016


Do you have a GREAT idea to build the bridge between teacher preparation and practice?! Teach to Lead, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, ASCD and over 120 educational organizations, wants to help you. Teach to Lead will host its next Teacher Leadership Summit in Washington, D.C. on November 3-4, 2016. This unique summit will focus on teacher preparation programs, leveraging teacher leadership to strengthen teacher prep programs. At the Summit, educators from around the nation will work to collaborate, problem solve, and develop action plans to put their own teacher leadership ideas into action. The Summit is designed to attract the best teacher leadership ideas from exceptional educators across the country to drive innovation in the teacher preparation space.


Teachers and institutions of higher education (IHEs) are welcome to apply. IHEs must identify and collaborate with alumni teachers to develop an idea proposal which addresses a current area of growth or problem of practice within their teacher preparation program. The IHE and alumni teachers will partner to identify a team to work on the proposal. These teams will be comprised of 4-5 individuals including: at least one in-service classroom teacher leader alumni of the teacher preparation program, at least one teacher candidates currently enrolled in the program, at least one teacher prep program faculty members, and at least one local school district representative. Alumni teachers will submit the idea proposal on behalf of the team.


Summit participants must:

  • Have an actionable teacher leadership idea;
  • Pay for or obtain sponsorship for travel;
  • Commit to taking implementation steps following Summit participation;
  • Be available to attend the entire Summit (8am Thursday, November 3 through 12:30pm on Friday, November 4);
  • There will be an optional reception on Wednesday, November 2 at 5pm.

To attend, you must submit your idea by September 6, 2016.  As space is limited for each Summit, idea submissions will be reviewed and invitations for participation, with registration details, will be emailed to those accepted. The Teach to Lead team will notify you if your idea is accepted for attendance by September 23.


Each team will be provided with a Critical Friend from a Teach to Lead supporting organization who has skills, knowledge and resources to assist you. Teach to Lead provides lodging (if more than 50 miles from hotel), some meals, and registration for participants.


If you have additional questions, please contact Anna Leach and Aman Dhanda from the Teach to Lead educator engagement team.

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Internship Opportunities with IFLE

IFLE Deputy Assistant Secretary with Summer Interns

IFLE seeks motivated students who are anxious to learn and work as part of our team during an unpaid full- or part-time internship in Washington, D.C. during the summer, fall, and/or spring!


Potential duties include: Collaborating to produce content for IFLE communications (articles, infographics, videos, social media posts); gathering and presenting statistics pertinent to international and foreign language education; supporting staff with grant competitions; gathering data on grantee projects; helping to arrange meetings and webinars; other related duties as required.


For more information about the internship and how to apply, visit our website at the link below.

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