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7 posts from January 2014


Global Architecture and Design programs off to a great start!

The CIEE Global Architecture and Design programs are off to a great start for the Spring 2014 semester. These programs are designed specifically to meet the academic requirements of advanced architecture and design students and offers them the chance to further their major studies in one of the world’s global centers for design innovation and excellence.

Don’t just take our word for it though. Below are photos and comments from the Prague students themselves. To learn more about these programs, click here


“I cannot believe I am learning Czech. It is very exciting. It gives me a totally new perspective.

The first two and a half weeks of the Global Architecture and Design program have been great. Our flat buddies, Jana and Sasha, have been very helpful in learning the language, navigating the city and assisting in simple tasks like grocery shopping and buying cell phones. The highlight for me so far has been our Czech language course; Luděk has been an awesome teacher, and I have made huge improvements in my faculty with the Czech language since I arrived.  By practicing Czech with CIEE staff and other non-English speakers, showing short videos, and holding class in environments other than the classroom, Luděk has been able to take away my anxiety of speaking Czech in public with strangers.

I am excited to begin the next phase of our program, and to start working with Adam and the rest of the ARCHIP staff.  Prague has been beautiful and exciting, and thanks to the work of Petra and Jana and our flat buddies (and the rest of the CIEE staff), I feel like everything has been thoroughly organized and planned, which allows me and my classmates to focus on learning new skills and perspectives while doing some high-quality architectural research.

Thanks for everything, CIEE, and I look forward to the rest of the program.”

Eric – Tulane University
Global Architecture and Design; Prague, Czech Republic, Spring 2014


“These first few weeks of the program have been incredible. Our apartment is beautiful and in an excellent location, allowing us easy access to the whole city. Luděk, our Czech language professor, is invested in us and our program and we have all enjoyed diving into the culture and breaking out of our "American bubble." The schedule allows us to explore the city at our own pace and gives us the opportunity to get to know our surroundings while learning the language. Our Czech flat buddies have also helped us immensely and we have already created great memories and bonds with them. Thus far, my favorite events were the dinners planned for our program. It was amazing to meet our professors and interact with them in a casual setting before beginning our classes. It immediately created bonds and fostered a community unlike the mentor-ship that is traditional at my home University. I am excited to work closely with my peers and professors to challenge myself and my work. Each day has been an adventure!

Though I am eager to begin classes at ARCHIP, I am extremely grateful for these first few weeks of the Czech course. It has served as a critical transition period that I think I would have struggled without. I now feel comfortable in my surroundings and with my peers, and am looking forward to the well thought out and exciting trips in our near future!”

Elisabeth – University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Global Architecture and Design; Prague, Czech Republic, Spring 2014


“It has been almost three weeks now since I arrived in the Czech Republic and I have to say, my time here so far has been incredible. From the moment I stepped through the arrival gate at Vaclav Havel Airport and saw the bright orange T-shirts of CIEE, I have been met with kindness, efficiency and a sense of endless possibilities. Everything from my housing option to understanding how to get from one side of the river to the other has been impeccably smooth.

Despite being very excited for the upcoming work I will be doing under the tutelage of Adam Vukamanov and his team at ARCHIP, the highlight so far has been the language course with Luděk Broucek. It has been an intensive two and a half week-long Czech Language course, but I wouldn't have had it any other way. I believe we were privileged to have such a small group because not only was our course more focused, but I believe it created a special bond between everyone despite the short period of time. In fact, I hope to continue taking this course, albeit in a more limited fashion, so as not to lose the potential of truly understanding and knowing the language. It’s going to play a pivotal role in the life I will be living here in Prague, so I hope to make the most of it.

As for the week to come: I may only be speaking for myself, but I think all of us in the study abroad group were blown away and excited by the potential shown to us during our academic meeting at ARCHIP. I have very limited experience in speculative and computational work so I am very excited to not only learn from Adam but grow alongside my peers so as to return to my home school a changed student. I believe this program has the potential to do that. ARCHIP is a wonderfully different facility than my home school and I am excited for the change of pace. Everything is laid out, the work is set, and the only thing missing is the start buzzer. I can't wait.

With the leadership of Jana, Petra, Luděk and their entire CIEE team my experience until this point has been everything I could have asked for.”

Marcos – Carnegie Mellon University
Global Architecture and Design; Prague, Czech Republic, Spring 2014


“My experience with Global Architecture and Design (GAD) has been great so far. The amount of time that everyone has spent preparing for the program is quite apparent. Every faculty member I have met seems very committed to the success of the program. Everyone at ARCHIP has been extremely welcoming. We were invited to their semester review and got to witness some of the work of current students at ARCHIP. 

Members of the CIEE administration have always been there to offer help if it was ever needed. Our "flat buddies" have gone above and beyond to assist us in this urban environment which is new to all of us in the GAD program. 

Our Intensive Czech Language course has been very effective because of the amount of effort our instructor, Luděk, has put into constructing a two week course consisting of pertinent subject matter that will allow us to continue to learn and structure a better understanding of the language even after our time with him is over. The combination of classroom exercises and outdoor excursions was essential to the success of the language course. Luděk's thoughtful balance of these two activities was greatly appreciated.”

Ryan – Tulane University
Global Architecture and Design; Prague, Czech Republic, Spring 2014


The class has been engaging and crucial in helping us navigate and explore Prague and the Czech culture. Our professor (Luděk B.) answers all our questions to the best of his knowledge and then some. I believe this will be significant to the bigger picture of our stay in Prague. A part of architecture that I love so much is the fact that spaces share a culture and the people's spirit. Instilling this basic knowledge about the language, customs, and habits will help us breathe life into the projects we will soon be creating this semester.

The smaller sized language class has been an integral part to our group’s success because it offers more chances to participate. I am glad to be part of this program and am excited for what the next couple of months will bring, especially the opportunities for collaboration. Our different backgrounds will add to the life changing experience that is happening now, which began when we set foot in Prague two weeks ago.

I am grateful for the opportunity the Global Architecture and Design Program has given me and I want to share it with the world. Learn. Share. Create.”

Jennifer – Portland State University
Global Architecture and Design; Prague, Czech Republic, Spring 2014


Additional photos from the Barcelona and Berlin Global Architecture and Design programs:

My Lecture







CIEE Kicks Off Best Summer Ever Sweepstakes

Ciee_study_abroad_summerFive students will win $5,000 toward summer study abroad in 2014. 

As part of our commitment to help students broaden their horizons with study abroad, the Best Summer Ever Sweepstakes will award five students $5,000 toward the 2014 CIEE Summer Study Abroad program of their choice. Winners will be announced weekly through March 3.

The Best Summer Sweepstakes is open to students who are currently enrolled in U.S. universities and colleges. Students can find complete terms and conditions and enter here.

CIEE offers over 70 top-quality immersive summer abroad programs in more than 30 countries worldwide, giving students more choice than anyone else. Summer programs range from four to 12 weeks, making it easy for students to find the ideal program that fits their needs and schedule.


CIEE and Diversity Abroad Announce Second Summit on Increasing Access and Diversity in Study Abroad

CIEE and Diversity Abroad are seeking leaders and change agents in the field to take part in the second Future Leaders Summit, March 30, 2014 in San Diego, California.

During this innovative, hands-on workshop, selected participants—study abroad professionals, university faculty and administrators, and industry experts—will develop new solutions for increasing access and diversity in study abroad. Together, they’ll consider how cultural biases keep students from exploring beyond their comfort zones, particularly through study abroad. And they’ll develop new ways to combat these cultural barriers and communicate the value of an international experience to students and parents.

This one-day workshop will build on the ideas developed during the inaugural Future Leaders Summit held November 20, 2013. In Minneapolis, Minnesota, 20 participants developed new approaches to study abroad curriculum and pedagogy that will open an international experience to a diverse population of students.

According to David F. Fougere, CIEE’s chief operating officer, study abroad, “The first Future Leaders Summit was a great success, setting the stage for the important work ahead of us to increase access to critical international experiences. Each participant brought passion, experience, and insight to the conversation, which will have a positive and lasting impact on both CIEE programs and the field of international education. We look forward to building on this success during our 2014 spring Summit.”

CIEE and Diversity Abroad created the Future Leaders Summit as a forum to examine best practices and generate solutions for addressing the leading barriers to study abroad: cost, curriculum, and culture. Summits, held three times annually, are open to study abroad professionals and university staff who are change agents at their institutions and who seek to develop or enhance their knowledge, skills, and competencies in increasing access and diversity in study abroad on campus. Each workshop is fully funded by CIEE and Diversity Abroad to ensure all schools, regardless of available resources for training and development, have the opportunity to nominate candidates.

Future Leaders Summits are designed to introduce new perspectives that encourage participants to think more broadly about diversity in higher education. Participants walk away with important tools and ideas they can use to increase participation in study abroad on their campuses. CIEE also is committed to incorporating exemplary, innovative solutions from these Summits into future study abroad programming. In this way, CIEE will provide participants and educators with high-potential pilot programs and new models to increase access and diversity.

Nominations for the second Future Leaders Summit are due January 24, 2014. 

Steve Amendo
Director, Marketing and Communications


2014 Winter Faculty Summit Photos

A few of our favorite images from the 2014 Facutly Summit























Faculty and CIEE Staff Gather for the 2014 Faculty Summit

Top faculty from 14 colleges and universities across the U.S. joined with CIEE senior staff, resident staff from CIEE Study Centers in the Dominican Republic, South Africa, Spain, and Thailand, and a member of the CIEE Academic Consortium Board (ACB) for the 2014 Faculty Summit, January 8-11 in Santiago, Dominican Republic.

Held annually, the Summit is part of CIEE’s commitment to collaborating with U.S. faculty to develop and evaluate its study abroad programs. This year’s impressive group of participants were chosen from a large number of applicants, based on previous experience with international education, curriculum design, and program leadership.

Participants explored various definitions and absolutes regarding academic service-learning, community engagement, and field practicum, and worked on best practices to strengthen and create CIEE programs that align with the needs of U.S. institutions.

Faculty participants and CIEE staff also met with resident staff from the CIEE Study Center in Santiago and visited CIEE community partner organizations that host students from CIEE Santiago semester, summer, and gap-year programs. 

Using the CIEE Santiago programs and community network as a base, the group explored various community engagement models and discussed opportunities and best practices for new global program models. Participants met with community leaders at a local orphanage, a non-profit association of local Santiago artisans, and a clinic providing care to economically marginalized communities.

The Faculty Summit was followed by the annual CIEE Academic Consortium Board Retreat, January 12-15 in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. Feedback and best practices from the Faculty Summit were incorporated into the agenda, allowing CIEE and the ACB to discuss development opportunities for new and existing CIEE programs, as well as other ways to engage U.S. faculty in program development and evaluation.

It was an intensive and fabulous few days, working with faculty on programs and ideas for which we both share a strong passion. We look forward to the continued collaboration and input from these faculty leaders, as well as continued support and quality assurance from the ACB. 

Best regards,


David F. Fougere

Chief Operating Officer – Study Abroad 


Three CIEE Board Members Honored


CIEE honored three outgoing members of its board of directors at a special ceremony on November 22 during the 2013 CIEE Annual Conference.

Ambassador Charles Baquet, Ambassador Kenton Keith, and Patti McGill Peterson, Ph.D. were honored after serving the maximum two terms. Over the past 10 years, these dynamic members used their proven leadership skills and extensive knowledge of international education, intercultural relations, and higher education to contribute positively to both the organization and the field of international education. Their dedication has helped to make a difference in the lives of countless students, professionals, and educators.

Their accomplishments include helping CIEE achieve well-managed, positive growth, which has enabled the organization to reach more participants than ever before and expand the breadth and depth of program offerings. Baquet, Keith, and Dr. Peterson were also instrumental in leading the organization—and the field—into the development of innovative programs and initiatives.

During the ceremony, each outgoing board member was presented with a resolution expressing CIEE’s “sincere gratitude for service to CIEE, its students, member institutions, and partners, as well as the worldwide international exchange community.”

Ambassador Charles Baquet

Ambassador Baquet retired in 2010 after an illustrious career focused on promoting peace throughout the world. Most recently, he served as director of the Center for Intercultural and International Programs. He has also served as a foreign affairs consultant at Xavier University, deputy director of the Peace Corps, U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Djibouti, U.S. consul general in Cape Town, and foreign service officer. During his tenure at CIEE, Baquet served on the board’s Finance and Investment Committee. 

Ambassador Kenton Keith

Ambassador Keith also retired in 2010 after serving as senior vice president of the Meridian International Center for more than 13 years. His past international relations and public diplomacy post include director of the United States Information Agency's Office of North African, Near Eastern, and South Asian Affairs; U.S. ambassador to Qatar; special envoy to Islamabad; and officer in the U.S. Navy. At CIEE, he served as vice-chair of the board of directors and as a member on the board’s Executive and Governance and Nominations Committees.

Patti McGill Peterson, Ph.D.

Dr. Peterson is currently presidential advisor for global initiatives at the American Council on Education. During her career in international and higher education, she has also served as senior associate at the Institute for Higher Education Policy, executive director of the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, vice president of the Institute of International Education, president of Wells College, president of St. Lawrence University, and senior fellow at Cornell University’s Institute for Public Affairs. Peterson served on the Executive and Governance and Nominations Committees while on CIEE’s board. 

CIEE Announces New VP Academic Affairs, Maritheresa Frain

Six months ago, CIEE began the search for a new vice president of academic affairs (VPAA) to join our team in Portland. Our search cast a wide net to find a candidate with a unique blend of leadership skills, academic credentials, and expertise in the field of international education. We spoke to many qualified candidates with diverse and interesting backgrounds. In the end, we realized that the perfect VPAA was already part of the CIEE family—Maritheresa Frain, director of our study center in Seville, Spain.

Maritheresa brings strong leadership skills, deep knowledge of both international and higher education and of CIEE, and impressive academic credentials to this role. She truly understands the challenges and the successes found in international education, having been on the frontlines of study abroad since 2000. During this time, she has not simply maintained the quality of our programs, she has built upon and strengthened what it means to take part in a CIEE study abroad program.

Maritheresa’s remarkable achievements in Seville include strengthening the academic quality of our existing programs while developing new summer and semester programs. She led the renovation of a 300-year-old palacio to house our new state-of-the-art study center. Perhaps most importantly, she built a team of resident staff in Seville who deliver the highest-quality international experience to more than 800 students each and every year. The success of CIEE’s programs in Seville is a true testament to Maritheresa’s knowledge, skills, and commitment.

Her dedication to study abroad doesn’t end at CIEE. Maritheresa often presents at international education conferences, such as NAFSA and Forum, on numerous topics, spreading her knowledge and passion to others.

Originally from Philadelphia, she completed her undergraduate work in international politics at the Pennsylvania State University, and earned her master’s degree and doctorate in international relations at Georgetown University. In addition to Seville, she has lived and worked in Greece, Russia, Switzerland, and Portugal. Maritheresa previously worked for the International Monetary Fund in Washington D.C., and was a visiting professor at Georgetown.

Drawing on her passion and experience, Maritheresa will be a dynamic, hands-on, and integral member of CIEE’s Study Abroad leadership team. She will work closely with the program management and development groups, our resident staff, and the Academic Consortium Board to have an impact on both CIEE programs and the field at large. In the first year, she’ll work on critical projects focused on CIEE’s approach to intercultural learning and language acquisition, and our commitment to faculty engagement. Maritheresa will also ensure the academic quality of our entire portfolio of study abroad programs.

We look forward to welcoming Maritheresa to Portland on July 1. Until then, she will begin her new duties as VPAA and manage the transition of the Seville study center to our new center director, Jaime Ramírez.