The MU International Engagement Awards recognize the outstanding work carried out by faculty, staff and students to internationalize the University of Missouri. A CII subcommittee evaluates nominations and determine awardees across three categories:
The awards recognize meaningful and sustained commitments to international work, whether directly on campus or brought back to the campus from an engagement abroad. In order to demonstrate their effect upon internationalizing the campus, nominees must clearly indicate the concrete impact made upon scholarship, students or MU programs by their international work.
Additional details are available in the most recent call for nominations.
Angellar Manguvo has committed herself to enhancing the academic and social welfare of international students through service and research. She serves as treasurer for the Missouri International Student Council and co-edited the MU International Student Survival Guide. She also serves as treasurer for the Association of Black Graduate and Professional Students, where she’s worked to foster unity among native-born, African and Afro-Caribbean black students through open dialogue. She served as a member of the Educational School and Counseling Psychology Campus Climate Committee, and of the African Student Association. Manguvo's research publications and presentations also contribute to MU’s internationalization. She has published recent papers on the role of volunteerism on social integration of African international students at a Midwestern university and on self-presentation of African international students at a Midwestern university, for which she has won multiple awards. Her dissertation topic is on the relationship between ethnic identity, perceived acceptance and cultural adjustment of sub-Saharan African international students in the United States.
Jill Ford has served in a number of key staff roles for the College of Engineering. In fall 2009, Jill developed the college's Peer Mentoring Program to address the needs of students as they make the transition from China to Columbia. Through the development of multicultural programming for American and international students, Ford is fostering a positive environment for international students and facilitating multicultural growth. Peer Mentoring Program events include activities such as touring the state capitol and meeting with Representative Chris Kelly, traveling to Hannibal, Mo., and touring the Mark Twain Museum, attending MU football and basketball games, and offering driving safety programs. In addition to developing the Peer Mentoring Program, Ford has also traveled to China and India to recruit international students and strengthen relationships with partner universities.
Dr. Xinhua Zhuang is widely regarded as an international leader by his peers and has worked to internationalize MU by establishing key educational relationships with outstanding Chinese universities. Zhuang’s effort has resulted in 129 students from more than ten universities in China and he has been personally involved in developing the mentoring program for international students in the College of Engineering. The program's goal is to sufficiently expose international students to western culture, so that the essence of democracy, freedom and human rights might be carried with these students when they return to China. Based on the success of his international engagement in both research and higher education, Zhuang has now been moving into a new arena that further bridges federal research and industrial collaborations between the U.S. and China. A delegation from MU consisting of the dean and department chairs will travel to China this summer to explore the feasibility of this new platform.
Dr. Puncky Heppner is known for being one of the most prolific researchers in the profession of counseling psychology. His scholarship in problem-solving strategies and career decision making, in particular, has gained tremendous attention among international scholars. His Problem Solving Inventory (PSI), for example, has been translated into many languages and remains a significant tool in problem-solving research. He has been invited by numerous international ministries, associations and universities to speak. He has been a Fulbright scholar in Sweden, Ireland, Taiwan and Italy. Beyond his research accomplishments, Heppner is recognized for his passion to provide guidance for the globalization of counseling psychology. At the institutional level, Heppner is instrumental in increasing the international student representation in counseling psychology programs, as well as promoting the globalization vision of counseling psychology beyond the United States.
Patricia Vewenda-Mabengo's ties to both Mizzou and to Africa run deep. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Vewenda-Mabengo and her family moved to Columbia when she was eight years old so that her father could pursue a master's degree in agricultural economics. Now an MU student herself, she is a completing her bachelor's degree in international studies with an emphasis in peace studies. As president of the African Student Association she has "worked to internationalize the MU campus by elevating students' and the campus community’s perception of Africans and demonstrating different aspects of African beauty, intellect and grace." To that end, Vewenda-Mabengo founded the Miss Africa Mizzou pageant, and skillfully organized other ASA events such as the MU African Gala Extravaganza, Un-silence the Congo, Taste of Africa and Africa Week. After graduating, she hopes to serve as a Peace Corps volunteer and eventually to return to the Democratic Republic of Congo in order to help build and work on rehabilitation programs for rape victims.
Pursuing a double-major in psychology and communication, MU undergraduate Yuan Tian is no stranger to multi-tasking. Since coming to MU she has regularly volunteered for several organizations benefitting MU's international community, including the International Center's new international student orientation. Most recently, Tian was elected to serve as president of the Friendship Association of Chinese Students and Scholars. In this capacity, she has been responsible for organizing services for MU's growing Chinese community — such as providing transportation for newly arriving Chinese students — and also for coordinating FACSS participation in campus events that showcase Chinese culture and talent. As executive producer for the 2011 MU China Night, she devoted considerable time to helping share Chinese culture with our campus and community.
Jake Halliday has furthered the internationalization of the University of Missouri through his work establishing an international reputation for the university's business incubator. In 2010 Halliday succeeded in achieving international incubator designation for the university's business incubator, an award recognizing incubators that offer specialized programs for serving young companies moving from overseas into the incubator's domestic market. Halliday has also developed a sister incubator relationship with Bio-City Nottingham, one of Europe's leading business incubators. Finally, through his "high growth ventures" class in the MBA program of MU’s Trulaske College of Business, he has supported the participation and success by MU students in prestigious international business plan competitions.
Throughout his career, Dr. John Miles Foley has been crossing borders — disciplinary as well as cultural — to further scholarship on "the oldest and the newest of humankind's communicative technologies, oral tradition and the Internet." In 1986 he founded the Center for Oral Tradition, whose 25-year mission has been to create an international forum for exchange. The corresponding journal, Oral Tradition, established the same year, has since published more than 500 articles examining more than 100 traditions worldwide, reaching an estimated annual readership of 20,000 in more than 200 countries. Foley has developed a series of courses that emphasize international connections, including a seminar on UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage program, and has taught three languages — ancient Greek, Anglo-Saxon, and South Slavic. In 1995 the CSOT finalized an agreement, ratified by the Missouri Legislature, with the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences to pursue joint projects. In 1996 he established at MU the Center for eResearch, promoting multidisciplinary research on digital and Internet initiatives. In the words of one colleague, beyond his extensive international resume, most impressive is the extent to which Foley "nurtures long-term international relations." Another nominator lauds Foley's "willingness to listen and form mutual and enduring relationships with colleagues all over the world, drawing them into mutual communication and enthusiasm." Through his scholarship, academic leadership and collegiality, Foley has not only brought the world’s oral traditions to Missouri, he has established himself and MU as an internationally recognized leader in the field of oral traditions.
Dr. Joe Hobbs’ commitment to an international perspective is apparent in his long record scholarship and service to the University of Missouri. Much of his career has been dedicated to researching and traveling to the Middle East, where he has explored topics including Bedouin herdsman, cave morphology and drug cultivation. More recently, he has become a tireless champion of MU’s emerging initiatives in Vietnam. Hobbs currently serves as director of MU’s Vietnam Institute, whose primary mission is to develop education and research exchanges with Vietnam. He notes that since beginning his work with colleagues through MU’s Vietnam Initiatives Group in 2006, and continuing with the Vietnam Institute, the number of Vietnamese students at MU has grown from 12 to 57. He has served in a consultative capacity on numerous occasions in Vietnam, sharing expertise on education and curriculum reform, as well as core research skills and practices. Hobbs has recently been awarded a place on the prestigious Fulbright Specialist Program roster in the category of international education specialists available to work in Vietnam.
A promising scholar in his field, Ahmed Ibrahim's doctoral research itself has global relevance, addressing the important issue of structural design in stressful environments such as earthquakes. As a student at MU, Ibrahim has played an active role in internationalizing the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. In April 2008, he was selected as part of a team of three professors and three graduate students to evaluate the condition of school and university buildings that were severely damaged by the August 2007 earthquake in Peru. This University of Missouri team was selected by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Ibrahim also helped establish a link between MU and Zagazig University in Egypt. As a result of his efforts, two Egyptian scholars are currently visiting MU for two years, and two MU professors and the dean of engineering will visit Zagazig in the near future. According to his adviser, Dr. Hani A. Salim, Ibrahim's efforts alone were the reason for establishing this successful international link, which could lead to additional collaborations with other universities in Egypt.
Rebecca Brandt has worked in international admissions at the University of Missouri for the last 26 years — developing nationally recognized expertise on processing applications for international students, assisting graduate departments with evaluation credentials and evaluating transfer credit for domestic students returning from study abroad programs. Recently, she has taken on two additional and very significant projects. The first of these involves her recruitment efforts in Korea, which she does in cooperation with the MU Asian Affairs Center and which have taken her on four trips to South Korea for the purpose of increasing the number of Korean students who attend MU. Brandt has additionally taken under her wing a number of Korean and Chinese interns in her office — providing them with meaningful work experiences that further introduce them to the American higher education system. In his letter supporting her nomination, director of the MU Asian Affairs Center Sang Kim commends Brandt's ability "to turn her knowledge in international admissions to cross-cultural understanding and diplomacy" as she interacts with various local partners, MU alums and prospective students and parents.
Patricia Smith has been the managing editor of the quarterly magazine Global Journalist for eight years, and serves as the editor and director of the Global Journalist website. The hard copy quarterly is circulated in more than 120 countries throughout the world to editors, publishers and leading journalists. The online version is available wherever the Internet exists and contains not only material from the hard copy edition but also fresh material about the news business throughout the world that is updated weekly. In his nomination letter, MU professor Stuart H. Loory explains that Smith "carries out her work by co-teaching a class each semester (summer included) in which students produce the magazine and website. Consequently, her internationalization work stretches in two directions. First, she plays a key role in making the university known worldwide as a force in international journalism. Second, she introduces students to the need for thorough, responsible, truthful journalism in all nations and helps to cultivate in those students the need and desire to reach out to other countries." Among her many additional areas of international service, Smith also directed and taught the School of Journalism's London program in summer 2006, and is currently co-chair of the North American Committee of the International Press Institute and a member of the international board of directors of the IPI. She also works closely with the leaders of the InterAmerican Press Association and the World Association of Newspapers.
Dr. Béa Gallimore was nominated for this award by her department chair, Dr. Flore Zephir. In her nomination letter, Zephir cites the numerous international initiatives in which Gallimore has been involved, her unwavering commitment to internationalizing our campus and the benefits of her initiatives to MU faculty and students. According to Zephir, Gallimore can be credited for having built the Francophone area studies in her department, as well as the accompanying library collection in her field. The African Francophone specialization has attracted several graduate students from Congo, Senegal and the Ivory Coast. In 2002, Gallimore established a second area of academic expertise in genocide studies. Subsequently, she published several articles about gender and genocide, and about women and conflict, and co-edited a book of articles on the Rwandan genocide, published in 2005. In 2006, she started working on another book project on the testimonies of female genocide survivors, thanks to grant from the Rwandan Ministry of Higher Education. She was able to spend six months in residency at the Institut des Recherches Scientifiques et Technologiques (lRST) in Rwanda, during which time she networked with Rwandan researchers, officials and colleagues from other international universities to facilitate their visits to MU. Building on this expertise, she created new courses about testimonial writings and has also developed a summer study abroad program in interdisciplinary genocide studies. As a follow up to the 2009 study abroad program, she helped three MU students find internships at organizations in Rwanda.
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