April 19, 2010
The MU Council on International Initiatives is pleased to announce the 2010 recipients of the MU International Engagement Awards. These awards honor exemplary work by faculty, staff and students to sustain and extend the University of Missouri's global reach and understanding.
The awards will be presented on Wednesday, April 21 at 3:30 p.m. in the Fred W. Smith Forum on the 2nd floor of the Reynolds Journalism Institute, immediately prior to the presentation by MU student Brian Pellot entitled De-Mystifying the Middle East: How I became a Marshall Scholar and what I plan to do.
The 2010 award recipients are listed below.
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, Professor 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 application 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 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 through, 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 the summer of 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.
Professor Bea Gallimore was nominated for this award by her department chair, Professor Flore Zephir. In her nomination letter, Dr. 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, Dr. 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, Dr. 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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