Boundless learning opportunities

Here’s a roundup of international education experiences for CMU students and faculty.

| Author: mily Stulz

From creating opportunities for Central Michigan University students to go abroad, to ensuring a positive and fulfilling experience for international students attending CMU to adding international elements to courses and programs, the Office of Global Engagement is dedicated to making international topics a part of everyday conversation.

Here are some of the ways CMU celebrated international education in the past year, as we celebrate International Education Week.

World travel opens doors of opportunity

Students and faculty use the summer months to explore countries around the globe, building their cultural competency, learning new languages, meeting people from a variety of life experiences and adapting to new cultures.

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Exploring inclusion in Serbia

Thirteen students in recreation, parks and leisure services administration were CMU's first to attend a three-week, faculty-led study abroad trip to Serbia, Croatia and Romania in early June to learn about programs for individuals with disabilities.

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Building a bridge between cultures

Hosted by the International Student Organization, the annual International Culture Expo event in April featured cultural performances, a showcase of traditional fashion, display tables, and an international buffet serving Indian and Mediterranean food. "We want to share our cultures, not just with students but everyone at the university and in Mount Pleasant," said Kimberly Benites Meneses, vice president of ISO and a general management student from Peru.

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Hearing the world through books

Literature can create bridges between languages and unite different groups of people through storytelling. The Clarke Historical Library's annual International Children's Book event in March featured 35 CMU students, faculty and staff reading stories aloud in 20 different languages. Readers summarized the story and cultural context in English before reading the story in its original language.

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Movement beyond borders

What do you get when you combine gymnastics, jazz, ballet, karate, kendo and judo? It may sound like a riddle, but it looks like power and grace in motion. It's Masashi Action Machine, a Japanese dance company that hosted a weeklong workshop in February for CMU dance students.

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A cultural journey in Africa

For students studying abroad, life in a foreign country may include many elements of uncertainty: new foods, unfamiliar languages and totally different ways of living. Laura Cochrane, an anthropology program faculty member at Central Michigan University, believes discomfort can shape students in powerful ways.

Melding artifacts and technology

The historic gravestones at an early medieval church outnumber the permanent residents of the Spanish village 13 to 1. Often, the only visitors are those passing through during the Camino de Santiago pilgrimage. But for five weeks each summer, this tiny town in northern Spain becomes a research haven for Central Michigan University art history faculty member Scott de Brestian and a cohort of students.

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