Binghamton University recognized for excellence in internationalization


Binghamton University's commitment to international experiences for its students has again received national acclaim with its receipt of the inaugural Senator Paul Simon Award for Campus Internationalization from NAFSA: The Association of International Educators.

The award indicates “an extraordinary level of achievement in terms of comprehensive international education that extends widely throughout the campus,” said Katharine Krebs, director of International Programs. “There are two fundamental reasons why this is important. First, we have so much to appreciate about societies and people around the world that we would simply lose knowledge and experience without this focus. Secondly, the world confronts terrible problems, so it comes with the fundamental belief that young people can have experiences to foster attitudes that, hopefully, will make them want to cooperate. Our world requires mammoth cooperation.”

Bellevue Community College in Washington, Duke University, St. Norbert College in Wisconsin and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill join with Binghamton in receiving the honor. Announcement of the award coincides with the release of NAFSA's report, “Internationalizing the Campus 2004: Profiles of Success at Colleges and University,” which profiles Binghamton as a campus where an international perspective permeates the institutional culture. The report showcases 13 U.S. colleges and universities that are making innovative, wide-ranging efforts to integrate global approaches to teaching into campus learning. The report’s release coincides with the nationwide commemoration of the fifth annual International Education Week, taking place November 15 – 19.

According to NAFSA, Binghamton attributes its success in international education “to recent curricular development in languages, area studies, global studies, the arts and sciences, and the professional schools, which provide many avenues for students to prepare themselves for leadership in a global society.” Programs like Languages Across the Curriculum (LxC), English Conversation
Pairs and the annual International Student Festival are cited as particularly successful at Binghamton.

A strong international population on campus also contributes to the global culture the University strives for. A record 1,229 students from around the globe currently attend Binghamton.

“We are honored to present the Senator Paul Simon Award for Campus Internationalization, named for a great champion of international education, to these remarkable colleges,” said NAFSA Executive Director and CEO Marlene Johnson.  “The innovative efforts of the schools included in this year’s report, and the energy and commitment with which they have pursued a global approach to campus learning, are excellent models for other institutions in the United States that want to provide similar opportunities for their students.  Internationalization is crucial to the mission of higher education institutions to ensure that their graduates are well-equipped for the challenges of the 21st century, with an understanding of other cultures and the knowledge and skills to succeed in an interconnected world.”

The featured institutions were selected by a distinguished advisory committee of international educators that examined the mission, breadth, commitment, and impact of internationalization efforts at 42 institutions nominated for consideration. 

This is the second time in four years that Binghamton University’s internationalization efforts have been recognized by NAFSA. In 2000, Binghamton was similarly recognized in a report by the American Council on Education, which designated the University as one of eight institutions nationally with “Promising Practices in Comprehensive Internationalization.” In addition, the University was honored with the 2003-04 Andrew Heiskell Award for Innovation in International Education, sponsored by the Institute of International Education (IIE).

Last Updated: 9/17/13