Rodolfo (Rudie) Altamirano is the director of international student and scholar services at the University of Pennsylvania, with primary responsibility for overall leadership to determine and implement organizational and campuswide strategies, including the delivery of quality services and programs to international students, scholars, faculty, staff, exchange visitors, and community members. Rudie coordinates Penn’s International Students Advisory Board and International Partners Outreach Group. He conceptualized and is spearheading Penn’s Intercultural Leadership Program. He has served in international education leadership positions at Michigan State University and the University of Michigan. He holds a doctoral degree from Michigan State University. Elected national chair of NAFSA's Knowledge Community for International Students and Scholars, he has also held numerous regional and national leadership positions in NAFSA. He has presented and conducted more than 100 immigration, cross-cultural communication, and conflict resolution workshops nationally and internationally.
Cynthia Banks has decades of experience dealing with organizational development and change management. She currently serves as founder and president of the Foundation for Global Scholars, a nonprofit supporting globally minded young adults with scholarships and other resources. Her consulting practice, New World Vistas, designs business and leadership strategies with an emphasis on supporting women leaders. From 1990-2014, Banks was the founder and CEO of GlobaLinks Learning Abroad, a global education abroad organization which has helped more than 30,000 students study or intern abroad at 120 programs worldwide. Banks serves as a member of NAFSA’s Board of Directors and has held four other significant leadership roles with the association including Chair, Education Abroad Knowledge Community and Executive Committee Treasurer, Region II. She serves as board advisor for the Colorado State University Institute for Entrepreneurship and is an elected member of the International Women's Forum. Now guest teaching at local universities, she also travels as an invited keynote speaker and presenter at national and global education conferences. Honors include 2009 Small Business of the Year by Colorado Women’s Chamber, Inc. Magazine Top 5000 Business and the 2013 Top Three Minority/Women Owned Business by the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce.
Robin Catmur is director of international student, scholar, and immigration services in the Office of International Education at the University of Georgia (UGA). She has been in the field of international education since 1995. In her current position at UGA, she manages all permanent residency work for UGA and supervises seven colleagues who process immigration sponsorships for more than 2,400 international students, scholars, faculty, and staff at UGA. She previously worked as director of visa services at Dartmouth College in New Hampshire. She is the recipient of the NAFSA 2012 Award of Excellence and is currently the regulatory ombudsperson for NAFSA’s Southeast region, serving as the liaison to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security for colleagues around the country who may need assistance and troubleshooting with pending scholar and employment-based immigration cases. As a trainer for NAFSA, she presents workshops pertaining to nonimmigrant and immigrant visa sponsorships, and management development. She holds a BA in international development from the University of California-Davis, and an MA in globalization studies from Dartmouth College.
Linda Drake Gobbo is currently a Professor in International Education, after having served in several dual administrative/teaching roles over the span of her career. Linda teaches strategic planning, internationalization at the organizational level, curriculum development, and multicultural group processes at SIT Graduate Institute (School for International Training). She has designed and implemented faculty-led education abroad courses in Intercultural Communication to Morocco, Turkey, and most recently to Costa Rica coupled with a TESOL certification program. She holds a MBA, M.Ed, and TESOL certification, and lived and worked in the UK on several occasions. Linda annually consults on these topics as well, and is active in NAFSA leadership. She was one of the lead designers and facilitators of NAFSA's Academy for International Education, served as the first Chair of the Teaching, Learning, and Scholarship (TLS) Knowledge Community, was a representative on the Subcommittee for Information Management, and Chair of the Training Coordination Subcommittee. Recently she was honored to receive the Sally Heym award from Region XI, which honors a colleague who has made outstanding contributions to the field of international education.
Amy Henry is executive director of international education at the Georgia Institute of Technology, a position that followed many years of work with study abroad students and programs. The Office of International Education leads student-centered internationalization on the campus, serves more than 6,000 F and J visa holders, 1,900 study and intern abroad students, and the 700 students pursuing the International Plan. Amy has degrees from the College of William and Mary and Georgia Tech. She has served in various advisory and leadership roles in international education including NAFSA Education Abroad Network Leader, Executive Committee for the Global Engineering Education Exchange consortium, and co-authoring NAFSA's e-publication, “Curriculum Integration of Study Abroad.”
Sara Kurtz Allaei is executive director for the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) Office of International Affairs and Indiana University assistant vice president for international services. She has more than 25 years of international education management experience, including ESL program management; international student and scholar services, and international enrollment management. Her current leadership role at IUPUI focuses on achieving goals for continued growth in international student enrollment in concert with comprehensive campus internationalization. Allaei also engages strategically in implementing university-wide initiatives involving international enrollment and services. A NAFSA member since 1991, she has held many member-leader roles in the association, including chair of Region VI, ethics coordinator for the NAFSA Membership Committee, NAFSA Academy Coach, and Trainer Corps member. She holds an MA in Applied Linguistics from Indiana University-Bloomington.
The presenters were meticulously prepared and very insightful…a wonderful example of how adult learning should be conducted.Participant, Washington, DC, 2014