About the Author: Alina L. Romanowski serves as Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Academic Programs in the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.International Education Week (IEW) is a global celebration of international educational exchange and its positive impact on the world. This joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education allows us to showcase the benefits of studying abroad for Americans and to attract international students to study in the United States and gain a better understanding of American society and values. International exchange programs build bridges of knowledge and understanding that connect people and inspire solutions to global challenges. I invite you to join in marking the tenth annual IEW by planning activities in your community that highlight the importance of international education and exchange.
On June 4, 2009, President Obama spoke to the world from one of the oldest institutions of higher education and learning in the world, Al-Azhar University in Cairo, where he addressed the importance of educational exchanges as a means to promote mutual understanding and respect. International Education Week is an opportunity to answer the President’s call to demonstrate the benefits of exchanges. Americans and global citizens alike can celebrate the powerful role of education and mutual understanding in gaining a more peaceful and prosperous world. Education is the path to empowerment and employment, especially for women and minorities, whose future contributions will improve conditions around the globe.
Join us in celebrating IEW in your community! Information, promotional materials, and events can be found at iew.state.gov. Also, look for additional blogs throughout the week announcing IEW highlights from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.