Building the CIE campus community and links to CIE’s world-wide network

The first of CIE’s fall 2019 dialogue series featured two CIE graduates who shared experiences from their careers – one in international contexts, and one leading a local organization that provides training for international groups.  The discussion also focused on their thoughts on building a vibrant CIE community on and off campus.


Mark Protti (Ed.D. 1999) has been the Executive Director at the Institute for Training and Development (ITD) in Amherst since 2003. ITD offers training programs on a wide range of topics: from developing civic education curricula to exploring minority integration in the West, from promoting indigenous visual arts to studying US culture and democracy.  Since its inception, ITD has trained more than 3000 people from over 100 countries.  ITD was founded by a core group of CIE members committed to social justice goals who developed and refined popular education workshops and techniques to reaching thousands of participants from around the world.


Mark shared some of the issues faced by an NGO dependent on government funding and the challenges of accepting funding without compromising the autonomy and goals of the NGO.


Rob Fuderich (M.Ed. 1987) spent 30 years working with UNICEF mostly in Central and Eastern Europe.  In the last 12 years he was, in turn, the UNICEF Country Representative in Kosovo, Jamaica, and Uzbekistan.  He is now retired and lives in Amherst where he continues his involvement in humanitarian relief in complex situations. 


Rob reflected on his experience at CIE as a student and emphasized the importance of having a community and a network that interacts regularly.  He spoke of the long-term connection between graduates and between graduates and current students.  He concurred with Dan Gerber (Ed.D. 1996), another CIE graduate who was present, on the importance of providing funding for students including Master’s students and undergraduates.


The session ended with discussion of other strategies for engaging students such as the opportunity to co-author papers or undertake research with faculty members.