Addressing Urgent Global Issues through the Fulbright Specialist Program
In 2015, the Fulbright Scholar Program took on two of
the biggest challenges facing the world today: climate
change and the global refugee crisis.
The Program selected the inaugural
group of scholars for the Fulbright Arctic Initiative and
launched a brand new Specialist Program to bring experts
in to work on refugee resettlement. IIE is proud administer the Fulbright Program, sponsored by the
U.S. Department of State, and to join in the
celebration of Fulbright’s 70th anniversary in 2016.
Supporting Women and Girls in STEM
We engaged with companies around the world to encourage girls to study science, technology, engineering and math
(STEM). In 2015 IIE’s WeTech Initiative, supported by
companies like Qualcomm and Goldman Sachs, announced
scholarships and afterschool support to help girls prepare
for careers in STEM fields. IIE has partnered with the Verizon
Foundation Innovative Learning Program (VILP) to help
girls in secondary school enter and succeed in technology
careers. To date, VILP has connected 800 girls in India and
the Philippines with mentors working in the tech industry.
Developing a Network of Leaders in Central America
The Seattle International Foundation (SIF) chose IIE as a partner to create a prestigious new leadership development program that will support high-impact leaders driving change in El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. SIF’s core approach to development in Central America includes investing in leadership programs, building organizational capacity, and creating networks of social change agents with the ability to transform economies, communities and societies. George McArthur, Whitaker International Fellow at Imperial College London. This program is being implemented by IIE's Latin America office, based in Mexico City.
Providing an Exchange Experience for Emerging Student Leaders in Brazil
In 2015, 18,000 Brazilian students studied in the United States through the IIE Brazil Scientific Mobility Program (BSMP). This initiative, administered by IIE and sponsored by CAPES and CNPq, is part of the Brazilian government's larger effort to grant 100,000 scholarships to the best students from Brazil for study science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)
at the world’s top universities. After completion of an academic year including a summer internship, students return to Brazil to complete their degrees and build the future of their home country.
Working with Diaspora Communities
to Build Home Country Capacity
In an interconnected world, diaspora communities can
continue to serve as tremendous resources to their home
countries even when living abroad. That’s been the
result of the Carnegie African Diaspora Fellowship
Program, which has supported 110 African fellows to
travel back to the region to conduct joint academic
projects with peers to help build capacity at host
universities in Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria and South Africa.
This successful program is a replicable model that
will guide IIE in connecting Greek universities
with the Greek diaspora community in 2016,
through a new program supported by the
Stavros Niarchos Foundation.
Protecting Students, Scholars and
Artists in Times of Crisis
In 2015, following a string of violent attacks on academic
institutions worldwide, IIE collaborated with the University
of York and the Brookings Doha Center to create the
York Accord, a call to protect education under attack. We
continued our work protecting education around the world
by awarding 165 grants to Nepalese students at 122 U.S.
universities, and provided grants and fellowships to more
than 300 Syrian students and 80 Syrian scholars who needed
assistance due to crises in their countries. Additionally,
our new Artist Protection Fund (APF), supported by the
Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, will expand our emergency
assistance work to the arts by making life-saving grants to
Mobilizing Support for U.S. Study Abroad
In 2015, the more than 600 partners that joined IIE’s
Generation Study Abroad Initiative committed $185
million in financial support over the next five years to make
study abroad more accessible to all. Recognizing the key role
that parents and K-12 teachers play in bringing the world into
their classrooms, we also teamed up with globally-minded
organizations to connect teachers with resources to create
globally minded students, and we published A Parent Guide
to Study Abroad in both English and Spanish. Our inaugural
IIE Summit on Generation Study Abroad brought all of
these stakeholders, as well as government officials, business
leaders and journalists together in Washington, D.C. for
action-oriented discussion on how to ensure international
Promoting Female Leaders and Entrepreneurs
The Women’s Enterprise for Sustainability (WES)
Program, which IIE manages with funding from the United
States government, expanded from 8 to 13 centers across
Tunisia. The WES Centers are supporting women entrepreneurs
at a pivotal moment in the country’s development by
sharing information and creating professional opportunities.
The TechWomen Program, also supported by the U.S.
Department of State, connected 99 women from 19 countries
with female mentors in Silicon Valley and provided them
with professional development opportunities.
students about American society and culture, as well as
involve them in community service and problem-solving that
they can bring back to their home countries.
Fostering Multilateral University Partnerships
to Solve Global Challenges
The Global Innovation Initiative, a program funded by the
U.S. and UK governments to foster research collaboration
through which universities from these two countries join
together with higher education institutions in Brazil, China,
India and Indonesia, created 14 new multilateral university
partnerships. The winning proposals address topics of
global significance such as energy, climate change and the
environment; agriculture, food security and water; global
health; and urban development.
Engaging Exchange Students with
IIE team members who work on the Fulbright Program
are making sure that Fulbright foreign students get to know
the people in U.S. communities and learn about pressing
issues facing Americans today. In 2015, oen of the many enrichment seminars organized for foreign Fulbrighters
was held in Los Angeles and explored environmental challenges facing California. The solutions oriented
seminar focused on what California communities
are doing to address water issues.
Paving the Way for Academic Collaboration
We believe that educational exchange has the power to
bridge gaps between countries that have had a history
of tense political relationships, assisting in the process of
reconnecting by encouraging practical cooperation in areas
of mutual benefit. In 2015, as the diplomatic relationship
between Cuba and the United States began to thaw, IIE led
an historic delegation of U.S. college and university
representatives to Cuba in an effort to support and expand
academic connections between the two countries. We expect
the delegation’s visit to result in outcomes such as new study
abroad programs, faculty exchange, joint conferences or
symposia, joint publications, and U.S. faculty-led courses
to Cuba. In 2016, international academic partnership
programs will focus on Mexico, Cuba and New Zealand.
Advocating for Diversity and Growth
in U.S. Study Abroad
Through IIE’s Generation Study Abroad Initiative as well
as the programs we administer on behalf of our sponsors, IIE
is working with a variety of stakeholders to diversify U.S. study
abroad. 57% of students who studied abroad through the
Benjamin A. Gilman International Scholarship Program,
sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, were people of
color (compared to 19% in the U.S. study abroad population
overall). And in 2015, IIE’s Generation Study Abroad initiative
awarded 160 scholarships to 26 colleges and universities
so they could provide financial support for study abroad to
diverse students on their campus. We have reached out to
encourage minority serving institutions and Historically Black
Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) to join Generation Study
Abroad, and more than 40 have done so to date.