Building Understanding, Breaking Down Barriers: 40 Years of Global Engagement at JMU
I-Week 2019: September 23-28, 2019

Committed to the principle that international experiences and perspectives are essential to any education, the Center for Global Engagement (CGE) promotes and encourages critical awareness of world issues; knowledge of and appreciation for other cultures, languages, and belief systems; global community; and engagement at the international level, so that we may educate active and responsible global citizens. A watershed moment in the history of international education at JMU was the 1979 establishment of Semester in London, which launched international programs for the university. Since then, JMU has worked to expand programming for studies abroad; increase international students, scholars, and staff; and make international opportunities available both on campus and around the world. Join us for International Week 2019 to celebrate four decades of building understanding and breaking down barriers!

See the listing below for the 2019 International Week events! Please also visit the I-Week book display in Carrier Library.

“The world has shrunk tremendously, and in the face of so much misinformation and political forces that sometimes seem a bit dark … there’s this sense in many countries of shutting the doors to ideas, thought processes, systems, religious beliefs, cultural practices.  More than ever, we need to combat that. There’s so much to be gained by students. It’s not just what they learn; it’s international competence that they’re gaining.” - Dr. Lee Sternberger, Executive Director, JMU's Center for Global Engagement

Did You Know:
  • The Harrisonburg community is one of the most diverse areas in this region: one of 33 Church World Service Refugee Resettlement sites (and one of the sites with the highest rate of refugee resettlement per capita) and one of the most diverse school systems in Virginia (56 languages represented and with more than half of students have a language other than English spoken at home). 
  • More JMU students participate in study abroad than most of our peers (#1 for total number of students studying abroad on short-term programs) with 1,380+ students studying in 55+ different countries each year.
  • Our international student body has been increasing steadily over the past 5 years and continues to grow. Right now at JMU we have international students representing 75 countries. 

The Center for Global Engagement is committed to supporting and further encouraging cross-cultural learning and collaboration. Given our 2019 theme of Building Understanding, Breaking Down Barriers: 40 Years of Global Engagement at JMU we invite proposals for creative opportunities to reach this goal – presentations, panels, workshops, performances, readings, and more.  


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