Executive Forum Meets to Connect the Local with the Global
November 13, 2017

The Forum was hosted by ACE’s Center for Internationalization and Global Engagement

Presidents, chief academic officers, and senior international officers gathered last week in Washington, DC, to address “Bridging the Local and the Global” at ACE’s 2017 Executive Forum for Leading Internationalization. 

Brad Farnsworth, vice president for internationalization and global engagement, opened the meeting highlighting efforts by ACE and the Association of International Education Administrators (AIEA) to help members of both associations advocate in favor of international education, particularly in a national political climate that seems increasingly skeptical about the benefits of globalization. AIEA immediate past president and associate vice chancellor for international affairs at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis Gil Latz shared insights about the need for greater advocacy at the local level in order to reach and empower citizens beyond the international education arena.

A key theme throughout the day was how internationalization plans should be rooted in a local context in order to build cooperation and trust with local stakeholders. Several examples of inclusive participation between the local and international community and business groups were shared.

The day’s first panel, moderated by Latz, discussed how internationalization can act as a driver for regional economic growth. Speakers discussed the potential for students and faculty to gain international experience through partnerships with locally based corporations. Few institutions prepare economic impact statements, though such statements can be helpful for measuring the contribution of institutions’ international activities to local economic development. 

The second panel focused on student learning and emphasized the importance of collaboration between institutions’ local community relations and civic engagement offices and international programs offices—for the benefit of both U.S. and international students.

The Forum concluded with a conversation between Sue Henderson, president of New Jersey City University, and Paaige K. Turner, principal associate, Communication Resource Associates, LLC, and adjunct professor at Webster University (MO). Henderson kicked off the conversation by asking, “How do we incorporate international students into the local culture but also incorporate ourselves into their lives?” 

Turner discussed the importance of framing different communications for different audiences, and of including the United States as a key part of internationalization and global engagement, noting: “Global is all of us at the same time.”

For more information about the Executive Forum for Leading Internationalization, please email cige@acenet.edu.