Northern Illinois University

NIU Office of Public Affairs

Deborah Pierce
Deborah Pierce

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News Release

Contact: Tom Parisi, NIU Office of Public Affairs
(815) 753-3635

November 12, 2009

Full slate of activities planned
for International Education Week at NIU

DeKalb, Ill. — A reception recognizing the Outstanding International Educator for the past year and a keynote speech by a Turkish government official headline International Education Week 2009 at Northern Illinois University.

A joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education, International Education Week will be celebrated on campuses nationwide beginning Monday, Nov. 16.

“Each year NIU mounts one of the broadest selections of events during this national observation, in order to highlight the many outstanding aspects of our global endeavor,” said Deborah Pierce, associate provost for International Programs. “This year's theme, ‘Going Global with NIU,' reflects the idea that students and faculty already have many pathways to an international experience through a wide variety of NIU programs.”

The annual International Recognition Reception will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday, Nov. 17, in the Sky Room of the Holmes Student Center. The event is open to the public, and a light buffet lunch will be served.

At the reception, the Outstanding International Educator Award will be presented to an NIU faculty member who has contributed significantly to international education through his or her teaching, research, public service and student service. International Programs also will honor the department that has made the most significant contribution to the internationalization effort across campus.

In addition, for the first time the division will honor a student who has made an outstanding contribution to international education at NIU.

Deputy Provost Harold Kafer and Political Scientist Daniel Kempton, who also directs the University Honors Program, will speak at the reception. Kafer is a leader in NIU's strategic planning efforts, while Kempton was named Outstanding International Educator in 2008.

Later in the week, Alpaslan Korkmaz, president of the Investment Support and Promotion Agency of Turkey, a government agency within the office of the Prime Minister of the Republic of Turkey, will present a keynote lecture. Korkmaz will discuss i nternational business as it relates to cross-cultural negotiation and dispute resolution. Sponsored by the College of Business, the event will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 19, in the Barsema Hall Auditorium.

“As NIU develops stronger ties with institutions in Turkey, we are honored to have an official from the Prime Minister's office speak on our campus,” Pierce said.

Other events also are on tap for International Week. Zeta Gamma Chapter of Phi Beta Delta, the Honor Society for International Scholars, is holding its sixth annual induction ceremony (by invitation only) on Thursday, Nov. 19. For the second year in a row, Zeta Gamma Chapter was honored as the Outstanding Midwest Regional Chapter of the international society, in part due to excellent support from NIU faculty and staff.

Dennis Barsema — an NIU alumnus, benefactor and instructor — will be inducted into the society. He will speak about his work in microfinance in developing nations, while Professor Emeritus Ladd Thomas of the Department of Political Science will be initiated as an honorary member of the chapter.

Provost Ray Alden will also speak at the event. “Recognizing achievements in global education, research and service through the international academic honor society is one of the highlights of this week,” Alden said.

Another event during the week will recognize the culture of France. Professor Catherine Raymond, director of the Center for Burma Studies, will share secrets of French style through scarf tying at a 3:30 p.m. workshop on Monday, Nov. 16. A native of France, Raymond will demonstrate how to make an outfit soignée with just a few flicks of a scarf, using fabrics she has collected in her work in Southeast Asian nations. International flag scarves will also be available for purchase.

Other activities during the week include a luncheon to honor NIU faculty leading study abroad programs; two workshops for students interested in the Student Fulbright Program; an ongoing exhibit titled, “ Tourist Art: Exploring Authenticity in a Museum Collection,” in the Anthropology Museum; and a Global Village Luncheon, featuring different foods from different cultures, at noon Friday in the College of Business Atrium.

The week will conclude with a presentation by NIU Political Scientist Danny Unger, an expert on Thai politics, at 11:45 a.m. Friday, Nov. 20, in the Sky Room of Holmes Student Center. Light refreshments will be served.

A full schedule of events for International Education Week is available online at

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