A Night with Greg Mortenson: How U.S. Higher Education Can Help Women in Afghanistan and Pakistan

November 09, 2010 | Topics: Foreign Policy, Education Abroad

By Katie O'Connell

Last night at the National Geographic Society Headquarters in Washington, DC, I had the privilege of listening to Greg Mortenson speak passionately about his life’s work of building schools in Afghanistan and Pakistan. You may know him as the author of the bestsellers Three Cups of Tea: One Man’s Mission to Promote Peace…One School at A Time and Stones into Schools: Promoting Peace with Books, Not Bombs, in Afghanistan and Pakistan. He is also co-founder of the nonprofit Central Asia Institute and founder of Pennies for Peace.... See More

From the Back of an Envelope: How NSEP Was Born

October 13, 2010 | Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy, Education Abroad

By Janice Mulholland

Yesterday evening, I had the opportunity to hear former Senator David L. Boren (D-Okla.), now president of the University of Oklahoma, recount the creation of the National Security Education Program. I found the story to be so interesting and refreshing considering today’s difficult and tenuous political environment that I wanted to share it with you.

It was 1991, and Senator Boren had just come out of a meeting about the need for national mineral reserves and was headed to the Senate floor for a vote on the Intelligence Authorization Act. The meeting about creating mineral reserves prompted him to start thinking about which other reserves the country could benefit from having. What he realized on his way to the Senate floor was that the country desperately needed a talent reserve – a reserve of graduates who could speak other languages, understand other cultures, and help provide the nation with a level of security it couldn’t have absent those skills. He said he got to the floor, discussed his idea with Senator Cohen (R-Maine), and then scribbled an amendment on the back of a torn brown paper envelope to establish a program that would begin to create this talent reserve. He then sent the envelope up to the parliamentarian as an amendment to the intelligence act.

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Ireland Launches Five-Year International Education Strategy

By Kevin Dillon

Last week, Taoiseach (Prime Minister) Brian Cowen launched an ambitious new plan to establish Ireland as a hub of international education. With the aim of expanding international students in higher education by 50% and in English language schools by 25% over the next five years, the industry would contribute some 1.2 billion euro to the economy by 2015. Ten separate strategic aims are set out in the plan to achieve in the Taoiseach’s words, a reputation as “a world-leading provider of international education.”... See More

The Power of Stories in DREAM Act Advocacy

September 20, 2010 | Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy, Immigration Policy

By Anne Galisky

It has been quite a week. Our documentary film, “Papers” went on sale the same day that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced that the DREAM Act would be brought to the floor as part of the Defense Authorization bill. The DREAM Act would provide a pathway to citizenship for undocumented youth who graduate from high school and attend two years of college or serve two years in the military. It was first introduced in 2001, and many believe it has the best chance of passage this year, starting with a cloture vote tomorrow.... See More

U.S. Educational Exchange Programs Continue to Produce World Leaders

By Kyle D’Souza

In remarks delivered at her swearing-in ceremony earlier this month, Assistant Secretary of State for Educational and Cultural Affairs Ann Stock highlighted the positive impact that educational exchanges can have on participants and on U.S. foreign policy. Noting that “in the last six weeks alone, six of our program alumni have become heads of state or heads of government,” Stock went on to say that “through our ongoing contacts with these ‘alumni,’ we foster relationships with new generations and fuel an engine for change that is perhaps unprecedented in American diplomacy.” Next month, a seventh alumnus will become president of Colombia. These seven alumni and the programs they participated in include:... See More

House Ag Committee to Vote on Cuba Travel Bill Today

June 30, 2010 | Topics: Foreign Policy, Education Abroad

By Janice Mulholland

UPDATE: We congratulate Chairman Collin Peterson and the House Agricultural Committee for passing legislation to open travel to Cuba.

At 4:42pm on June 30, 2010, the House Agriculture Committee passed H.R. 4645, the Travel Restriction Reform and Export Enhancement Act, to restore the right of all Americans to travel to Cuba and expand agricultural exports to Cuba. The legislation will now go the House floor for a vote. That vote could happen later this summer.

Stay tuned for further opportunities to support this bill as it makes its way through Congress.

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NAFSA Resolution Urges Arizona to Repeal Anti-Immigrant Law

June 02, 2010 | Topics: Immigration Policy, Annual Conference

By Everett Egginton

I’m delighted that NAFSA’s members voted for and the Board of Directors approved a resolution I submitted for consideration at today’s business meeting here at the annual conference in Kansas City. The resolution calls for the immediate repeal of anti-immigrant legislation by the State of Arizona urges other states to refrain from passing similar measures; asks the U.S. Congress to act quickly to enact comprehensive immigration reform; and resolves the association to not hold national and regional meetings in the State of Arizona until the situation is rectified.... See More

Secretary of Education Arne Duncan Stresses the Importance of a Global Education

By Marlene M. Johnson

In an event yesterday sponsored by the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) State and Local Officials Initiative, U.S. Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan emphasized the importance of a global approach to education. Noting that the United States is experiencing both increased competition from and collaboration with other countries, Duncan described education as the great equalizer and connector, not just for students in American schools, but also around the world.... See More