Central College Abroad at annual NAFSA Conference

Central College Abroad comes off a successful week at the NAFSA conference held May 30-June 4 in Kansas City, Mo. The conference annually draws over 7,000 professionals from within the field of international education, and Central College Abroad was one of approximately 365 conference exhibitors. 

Breakfast Reception
Our presence at the 2010 conference featured our highly anticipated annual NAFSA breakfast reception, with keynote speaker, Harry Smith, CBS news correspondent and Central College alumnus.  This event brought together members of the Central College Abroad Cooperative Council and friends of Central College Abroad to listen to Smith speak on “The Value of Globalized Education Today.”

Smith shared how his own international experience during college as an English language teacher in Taiwan transformed his life and changed his goals. He emphasized that the transformative power lies in genuine integration into the host culture - a notion Central College Abroad supports by encouraging student participation in service-learning and internship placements while abroad. Smith concluded with questions from the audience and elaborated on his experiences covering the war in Bosnia and the recent devastation in Haiti.

Dr. Larry Braskamp, Central College alumnus and co-author of the Global Perspective Inventory (GPI) was also in attendance at the breakfast.  Dr. Braskamp’s article, “ Assessing Progress in Global Learning and Development of Students with Education Abroad Experiences ,” was published in the 18th volume of the Frontiers Journal, which was given to all attendees.

We were also delighted to introduce Central College’s twenty-first president, Dr. Mark Putnam, to breakfast attendees. Putnam comes to Central College from Northeastern University in Boston, MA., where he was Senior Vice President for Executive Affairs.

Read more stories about Harry Smith's speech at: http://blog.nafsa.org/2010/06/15/cbs-news-correspondent/

Poster Sessions
Central College Abroad was proud to participate in educational poster sessions at the conference. Central College director of community-based learning, Cheri Doane, and Central College Abroad senior coordinator of institutional relations, Jessica Klyn de Novelo, presented “Shaping Global Perspective: Engaging students though service-learning abroad,” which highlighted Central’s leadership in international service-learning. Central College Abroad manager of on-campus operations, Brian Zylstra, and Jennifer Larson, coordinator of institutional relations, also presented Central’s advancements in assessment in “Navigating the study abroad experience through assessment-based programming.”

“It was heartening to interact with so many institutions who want to gain an understanding of service-learning and who understand the potential of the service-learning pedagogy,” commented Doane. “We had a chance to discuss the academic, civic and developmental outcomes of academic service-learning with dozens of colleges and universities.”

We extend a thank you to all those who connected with us throughout the conference. We appreciated the opportunity to meet with so many of our colleagues who join us in supporting international education.