IPO News

Trivedi and Allan Representing UMass for Discussion on Expanding US-India Educational Partnerships

Wednesday, March 6, 2024

Picture of Kalpen Trivedi and James AllanUMass Amherst is one of 17 U.S. colleges and universities whose representatives have been selected to visit India to discuss exploring and expanding bilateral partnerships between the two countries at the Institute of International Education’s (IIE) Leadership Delegation from Feb. 25-March 2.

Representing UMass at the event, which features more than 100 higher education leaders and senior officials from the U.S. and India, are Vice Provost for Global Affairs and International Programs Office Director Kalpen Trivedi and James Allan, associate dean of research and engagement for the Manning College of Information and Computer Sciences. 

Thirty-one provosts, vice provosts, deans and other leaders from U.S. higher education institutions were expected to attend the seven-day, three-city visit to India. The event is part of the Center for International Partnership’s 2023-24 IIE Country Spotlight Series: India, which aims to support broader bi-national efforts to increase U.S.-India collaboration and student/scholar mobility in higher education. Discussions will focus on the intersection of higher education, business and government, offering participants an exploration of India’s rapidly evolving higher education landscape and collaboration opportunities. In addition, the delegation provides a face-to-face forum for U.S. and Indian leaders to interact, create meaningful relationships and consolidate strategies.

More than 40% of India’s 1.4 billion population is under the age of 25, and demand for education exceeds in-country supply. Newly released data show record-high Indian student and scholar enrollment on U.S. campuses. More than 265,000 Indian students came to the United States to pursue higher education in the 2022–23 academic year, an all-time high for the world’s fifth-largest economy and now the most populous country. With more than 16,000 Indian scholars in the U.S. in 2022–23, the country is second only to China.

For more information, visit the IIE website.

International students at UMass Amherst

Report Finds UMass Amherst International Students Contribute Over $188 Million to Massachusetts Economy

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

graph of Massachusetts District 2 from NAFSA Economic Value ReportDuring the 2022-23 academic year, international students at UMass Amherst contributed $188.7 million to the economy and supported 1,984 jobs, a remarkable 17% increase over the previous year, according to the 2022 Economic Value Report from NAFSA: Association for International Educators. UMass Amherst has also claimed the first spot in Massachusetts Congressional District 2 for the economic contribution by international students among higher education institutions.

According to the NAFSA report, nearly 80,000 international students in Massachusetts contributed $3.6 billion and supported 34,930 jobs, marking a 16% increase from last year. UMass Amherst is ranked fifth among Massachusetts colleges and universities in providing economic benefits from international students. Massachusetts Congressional Districts 5 and 7 rank among the Top 10 in the nation to see a positive economic impact from international students.

The presence of international students at UMass Amherst has a direct and positive impact on the local economy, university officials say, contributing significantly to the local community by spending on housing, food, transportation and various other goods and services. The demand generated by the international student population stimulates local businesses, creating jobs and fostering economic growth in the surrounding areas.

“Not only do international students enrich our campus community immeasurably by sharing their experiences with us, as the Economic Value Report shows, their presence leads to a large quantifiable economic impact in our region,” says UMass Amherst Vice Provost for Global Affairs Kalpen Trivedi.

Overall, international students studying in the United States contributed $40.1 billion to the economy and supported 368,333 jobs during the 2022-23 academic year. These jobs extend beyond higher education to sectors in dining, retail, health insurance, telecommunications, accommodation and transportation. With a 9.8% increase in jobs supported compared to the year prior, NAFSA estimates that one job was created or supported for every three international students during the last academic year.

Although the economic impact of international students remains below the pre-pandemic level, this year’s report marks the second consecutive year of growth. 

 The full report, released during U.S. State Department’s annual celebration of International Education Week highlighting the economic contributions of international students, can be found on NAFSA’s website.

Author Christo Brand, Nelson Mandela's Prison Guard Turned Friend, to Visit Campus Nov. 1

Friday, October 20, 2023

Christo Brand, author of “Doing Life with Mandela: My Prisoner, My Friend” will visit the UMass Amherst campus for an afternoon luncheon, discussion and lecture on Wednesday., Nov. 1.

Brand will offer a rare glimpse into Nelson Mandela’s resilience, wisdom and humor through the lens of the unlikely friendship that grew between the two men over the course of Mandela’s imprisonment at Robben Island and Pollsmoor prisons in the late 1970s and 1980s.

Following a small luncheon with South African students, scholars and faculty, Brand will speak to rising student leaders in the Black Box Theater at 2:30 p.m. The discussion will be moderated by the Felicia Griffin-Fennell, director of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences RISE program, and Jamie Rowen, director of the Center for Law, Justice and Societies.

At 4 p.m., former Chancellor Marcellette Williams will introduce Brand ahead of his public audience lecture in the Old Chapel with a book signing and reception to follow.

Brand’s visit is co-sponsored by the UMass Amherst Chancellor’s Office, the Office of Equity and Inclusion and the International Programs Office.  For more information, contact Summer Cable, International Student and Scholar Success advisor, at sscable[at]umass[dot]edu.

How will the Government Shutdown affect Immigration Services?

Thursday, September 28, 2023

If the U.S. government fails to pass legislation to fund the federal government beyond September 30th, certain government agencies will be affected. Below is information on how a potential government shutdown will affect immigration services.

Immigration benefit applications:

  • U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is fee-funded and will operate as normal.
  • Department of Labor (DOL) will not be able to process Labor Condition Applications (LCAs) or PERM applications — which would delay the filing of any H1B petitions and PERM related green card filings.
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will continue screening and admitting foreign nationals at ports of entry, but delays could occur with application processing or inadmissibility waivers.

Consular services and visas:

  • The Department of State (DOS) is fee-funded, so visa services would continue as long as funding is available.
  • Please note that DOS works with many other agencies in the visa process, e.g., security screening. If another agency shuts down or has to de-prioritize its work for State, that halts processing of the visa application.

Social Security Administration:

  • The Social Security Administration (SSA) indicates that it will still issue new Social Security cards and numbers during a shutdown.
  • However, it is anticipated that this process will be severely delayed throughout the duration of a shutdown, this can impact anyone who is in the process of applying for a Social Security Number.

In the event of a government shutdown, it is impossible to predict how long it would last. Depending on the duration of the shutdown, government agencies may have a backlog of work to process when they reopen. Any delays to immigration services will be outside of our control. Please reach out to iss[at]umass[dot]edu if you have any questions or concerns.

Barbara B. Burn Memorial Scholarship Open!

Friday, September 22, 2023

Dr. Barbara B. Burn founded the International Programs Office at UMass Amherst in the 1970s and devoted her career to the ideal of making international education accessible to any student. When Dr. Burn passed away in February 2002, her family, in cooperation with the University, established a memorial scholarship in her memory. Every spring semester, the BBB Scholarship Committee will award an annual $1000 scholarship.

Eligible applicants must:

  • Be currently enrolled as a sophomore, junior, or senior Bachelor’s (undergraduate) degree international
  • Student at UMass Amherst as of the start of fall semester 2023.
  • Have a minimum cumulative average (GPA) of 3.75
  • Be sponsored by UMass Amherst in a non-immigrant visa status (i.e. F-1, J-1)

To apply for this scholarship:

  • Complete the application below with the endorsement from your primary academic advisor
  • Provide the name and contact information for either an academic advisor or UMass faculty member who will provide a letter of recommendation.
  • Upload a brief one page essay using the following naming format: [Last Name] "BBB F2023"
  • Have a faculty member or academic advisor submit a letter of recommendation in support of your application. The letter of recommendation is to be submitted using this form.

Click here to apply

Seven Selected from UMass Amherst to Receive Prestigious 2023 24 Fulbright U.S. Scholar Awards

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Seven UMass Amherst faculty, researchers and administrators have been selected to receive prestigious Fulbright U.S. Scholar Awards for the 2023-24 academic year.

Established by Congress in 1946, the Fulbright Program is the U.S. government’s flagship program of international educational and cultural exchange. The Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program annually offers over 400 awards in more than 135 countries for U.S. faculty, administrators, and researchers to teach, conduct research, and carry out professional projects around the world.

“At UMass, we are incredibly lucky to have a rich depth of experience with this program,” says Associate Provost for Faculty Development Angela de Oliveira. “Faculty come from all parts of campus and have engaged in exciting projects with deep and lasting impacts all over the globe. This is exactly the type of work we should be supporting as a public university.”

Recipients include:

Kirby Deater-Deckard, professor of psychological and brain sciences. He will be a Fulbright Scholar in Finland at the University of Turku and a research director fellow at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies. He will be collaborating with psychological and brain scientists at the Universities of Turku and Helsinki to investigate cross-cultural and individual differences in children’s and adolescents’ psychological and behavioral development through the FinnBrain Study, the Center for Learning Dynamics and Intervention Research, and the Parents and Adolescents Across Cultures Study. “I’m so excited to be able to collaborate with this group of outstanding psychological and brain scientists in Finland and eight other countries around the world, as we test competing models of child and adolescent development in distinct cultural and geopolitical contexts,” says Deater-Deckard.

Karen Giuliano, professor of nursing and co-director of the Elaine Marieb Center for Nursing and Engineering Innovation. Her Fulbright research project in Scotland will be based at the Edinburgh Napier School (ENU) of Health and Social Care, the largest school of health and social care in Scotland.  Of particular relevance to Giuliano’s research, ENU has a specific focus on both innovative and applied research and has identified the area of healthcare technology as a key area for strategic development. “The best and most cost-effective outcomes for patients are most likely to be achieved when you combine the technical expertise of engineers with the clinical expertise of nurses to solve real-world problems at the front lines of care,” says Giuliano.

Li-Jun Ma, professor of biochemistry and molecular biology. Ma’s Fulbright project in Serbia is based on an established connection with faculty at University of Novi Sad to address an emerging apple rot disease that has created great concerns in yield losses and toxin-contaminated apples. “This Fulbright award aligns with my research goals of deciphering the molecular mechanisms of fungal-host interaction and solving agriculturally important problems,” says Ma. “This experience will help me to develop a world-embracing vision and prepare me to be a better scientist, a more compassionate teacher, and a proud world citizen.”

Martín Medina Elizalde, associate professor of earth, geographic and climate sciences. The goal of Medina Elizalde’s Fulbright project in Uruguay at the Universidad de la República is to advance research in the underlying drivers of climate change along the Río de la Plata estuary during the last millennia and promote graduate student research and educational exchange. Medina Elizalde developed the project to foster environmental stewardship, paleoclimate reconstruction, and climate change education, noting “It is ultimately by empathizing with the natural world and each other that we can develop a deeper understanding of the interconnectedness of our actions and their impact on the planet.”

Lincoln Nemetz-Carlson, affiliated scholar, architecture, College of Humanities and Fine Arts. He will be hosted by the Azerbaijan University of Architecture and Construction to research Azerbaijani Brutalist architecture from the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s. His project includes preparation of a publication and materials for a public exhibition that he plans to bring back to UMass. “Azerbaijan contains some of the most diverse and fascinating architectural legacies in the entire world, says Nemetz-Carlson. “I look forward to creating and fostering relationships between Azerbaijani historians and architects and our organization, UMassBRUT, which advocates for the Brutalist architecture of the University of Massachusetts system.”

Luke Remage-Healey, professor of psychological and brain sciences. As a Fulbright Scholar in Germany, Remage-Healey will conduct research at the Ludwig Maximilian University Division of Neurobiology in Munich. He will collaborate with neuroscientists there on a project investigating the contribution of fast, direct ion flow between neurons in the auditory system of songbirds. “This fellowship is an opportunity to learn about whether these poorly understood ‘gap junctions’ between neurons contribute to the way animals process and store memories for sounds, like song and speech,” says Remage-Healey. “I’m looking forward to this focused time to work on this question with an international group in Munich.”

Kalpen Trivedi, vice provost for global affairs. Trivedi’s time in France will be spent visiting French higher education government and research facilities as well as making connections with university and industry partners in the Paris and Grenoble regions with a view to forging new collaborations for UMass Amherst and increasing UMass’s visibility and impact in France. “I am delighted and honored to be chosen as a Fulbright Scholar and I look forward to building partnerships in France that will continue to support our faculty and students to meet their international goals,” says Trivedi.

In addition to these seven Fulbright U.S. Scholars, Tilman Wolf, professor of electrical and computer engineering, senior vice provost for Academic Affairs, and associate chancellor for space and capital planning, is currently in Gambia through a Fulbright Specialist Program Award to complete a project at the Ministry of Higher Education Research Science and Technology.

UMass Amherst faculty receive support with the application process through the annual Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program Workshop offered jointly each spring semester by the International Programs Office, Office of Faculty Development and the Office of Research & Engagement.

UMass Amherst to Celebrate Campus Installation of Berlin Wall Segment April 25 with German Consul General

Tuesday, April 25, 2023

The University of Massachusetts Amherst will celebrate the installation of a 12-foot segment of the Berlin Wall painted by famed French artist Thierry Noir on Tuesday, April 25 at 2 p.m. at the Memorial Hall patio. Sonja Kreibich, Consul General of Germany to the New England States, will join UMass President Marty Meehan, UMass Amherst Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy and other campus officials for the event, which is the highlight of a week of art exhibitions and film screenings related to the history, impact and legacy of the structure that divided Germany’s capital for three decades.

Donated to the university by the family of Eric Hanson, the wall segment painted by Noir is titled “The Power of Creativity over Concrete.” In the 1980s, Noir, credited with being the first artist to paint the Berlin Wall, risked arrest by East German authorities for illicitly painting on the west side of the wall three meters beyond the western border. He ultimately painted nearly six kilometers of the wall over the course of five years. The campus’s wall segment was originally painted by Noir in 1990 in front of an old print factory in the former southeast Berlin district of Treptow.

The wall segment is being installed outside in an east/west direction — reflecting its placement in Germany — within a glass case next to Herter Hall, which is home to the history and German and Scandinavian studies academic departments and the DEFA Film Library. Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, DEFA is the only archive and research center outside of Germany devoted to a broad spectrum of filmmaking from and related to the former East Germany.

“The university is grateful to the family of Eric Hanson for the generous donation of this segment of the Berlin Wall,” Subbaswamy said. “For nearly 30 years, the wall stood as a cruel symbol of division — dissecting not only a city and a country, but families and entire societies — and its fall marked a joyous occasion of unification and the beginning of the end of the Cold War. This particular segment of the wall shows that inspiring art can be made amid terrible situations, and its presence at the heart of campus reflects UMass Amherst’s revolutionary spirit.”

A Special Week Featuring Films and Events

A number of related supporting events, including art exhibits and film screenings presented by the German department and DEFA, will also take place on campus the week of the installation celebration.

  • From April 24-28, “The Berlin Wall: Borders and Barriers in the Past and Present” will exhibit art submitted by undergraduate students from the Five Colleges in the lobby of the Bromery Center for the Arts. An opening reception for the exhibit will be held Monday, April 24 at 5 p.m.
  • Also on April 24, DEFA will present a screening of the film Drawing a Line, followed by a Q&A session with director Gerd Kroske. On Wednesday, April 26, DEFA will present a screening of the documentary “The Wall,” which will also be followed by a Q&A with Kroske, who served as assistant director on the film. Kroske will also visit German and history classes while on campus April 24-26.

More information about the events surrounding the installation celebration can be found on the DEFA website.

Hokkaido University Delegation Visits UMass Amherst

Friday, April 21, 2023

UMass Amherst officials welcomed Hokkaido University President Kiyohiro Houkin and his delegation this week to celebrate the long-lasting partnership between the two institutions and explore opportunities for future collaborations.

This is President Houkin’s first visit to UMass Amherst. Before his role at Hokkaido University, he was a leading expert in neurosurgery and served as the director of Hokkaido University Hospital from 2013 to 2019.

Led by Houkin, the delegation from Hokkaido University is visiting from April 19-21. Delegation members include: Dr. Aya Takahashi, executive vice president for international affairs; Masaharu Yoshioka, professor of information science and technology; Yoichiro Hoshino, professor for field science for northern biosphere; Tetsuya Aikoh, associate professor of agriculture; Tetsuya Sato, manager of international planning; and Taena Uemura, research administrator at the Institute for International Collaborations.

Hokkaido University is one of the oldest and most prestigious national universities in Japan. Established in 1876, Hokkaido is attended by over 18,000 students, including 2,000 international students from over 130 countries. The university is known for its strengths in natural sciences, social sciences and engineering.

UMass Amherst and Hokkaido University have enjoyed a strong partnership since the late 1800s. The two universities have been linked ever since William S. Clark, the third president of Massachusetts Agricultural College (now UMass Amherst), helped establish Sapporo Agricultural College (now Hokkaido University) and served as the vice president of the Japanese college for eight months. The bond has remained strong over the years as both universities underwent transformations.

During their visit, Houkin and his delegation planned to meet with UMass Amherst's leadership including Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy and Provost Tricia Serio, faculty members and researchers to discuss new and ongoing collaborations in research, student exchange programs and joint academic initiatives. The discussions are focused on several areas of mutual interest, including environmental sustainability, health and well-being, agricultural innovations and international education.

The visit itinerary also featured a tour of research facilities, including the Institute for Applied Life Sciences, the Conte National Center for Polymer Research and the UMass Center for International Education. In addition, the delegation planned to visit the oldest and largest Japanese elm tree on American soil, which was planted from gifted seeds brought back from Japan and is housed on the southeast side of South College. They also planned to attend a curated presentation on the Hokkaido Archives and Special Collections at the DuBois Library and to tour the UMass Cold Spring Orchard and Agricultural Learning Center.

President of Kyiv School of Economics Visits UMass Amherst

Friday, February 24, 2023

As part of UMass Amherst’s ongoing partnership with the Kyiv School of Economics (KSE), Tymofiy Mylovanov, president of KSE, visited campus and met with UMass leaders on Feb. 22. Mylovanov has previously served as the minister of trade for Ukraine.

“I am honored that we had the opportunity to welcome President Mylovanov to campus as we approach the first anniversary of the brutal and illegal war on Ukraine,” said Kalpen Trivedi, vice provost for global affairs. “It is very important for us to show that UMass stands with Ukrainian academia, and the work we have begun this year will surely be the foundation of a lasting partnership.”

Last March, the campus community united to offer support to Ukraine, and the partnership with KSE was established as a means of supporting Ukrainian scholars. The initiative was spearheaded by Anna Nagurney, Eugene M. Isenberg Chair in Integrative Studies at the Isenberg School of Management, in collaboration with Bogdan Prokopovych, an Isenberg lecturer; Ina Ganguli, associate professor of economics; and Lauren McCarthy, associate professor of legal studies and political science. Support was also provided by the International Programs Office and then-Provost John McCarthy.

As a result of their efforts, UMass’ series of memoranda of agreement with KSE culminated in an academic exchange program for students and established a non-resident, virtual scholar in residence program for Ukrainian scholars to continue their research during wartime.

Fifteen scholars from Ukraine in a variety of fields have been matched with UMass faculty in Isenberg School of Management, the College of Social & Behavioral Sciences, and the College of Natural Sciences. A virtual symposium is planned for the spring semester to showcase the collaborative projects.

During his visit, Mylovanov met with a number of UMass officials including Provost Tricia Serio; Provost Emeritus McCarthy; Vice Provost Trivedi; Isenberg Dean Anne Massey; SBS Dean R. Karl Rethemeyer; and CNS Interim Dean Nathaniel Whitaker.

UMass Amherst Ranks Fifth Among Massachusetts Colleges and Universities in Economic Benefits Generated by International Students

Tuesday, November 15, 2022

International students attending the University of Massachusetts Amherst generate nearly $157 million in economic impact for the region and state and support nearly 1,800 jobs, according to a new report released by NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

The report shows that UMass Amherst’s approximately 4,200 international students – over 1,800 undergraduate and nearly 2,400 graduate students – contribute $156.9 million to the economy, fifth-most among Massachusetts colleges and universities. Based on the association’s estimates, that spending in the higher education, accommodation, dining, retail, transportation, telecommunications and health insurance sectors supports 1,773 jobs.

For the second straight year, NAFSA found that the Bay State saw the third-largest economic activity created by international students in the country, with a 2021 financial contribution of $3.1 billion and 31,420 jobs supported by 71,026 students. Nationally, the nearly one million international students at U.S. colleges and universities contributed $33.8 billion to the U.S. economy during the 2021-22 academic year.

“International Education Week is a time to reflect on and celebrate the diversity of our international community and the value of global educational exchange,” says Kalpen Trivedi, UMass Amherst vice provost of global affairs in the International Programs Office (IPO), which in celebration of International Education Week is conducting a number of events on campus for international students, including relaunching the popular IPO Coffee Hour Series. “Our classrooms and our communities are infinitely richer for the viewpoint diversity and cultural vibrancy our international students and scholars bring to UMass, and as the data from NAFSA shows, they make a major material contribution to the state and the region’s economic development.”

A summary of the complete national report, released in conjunction with the U.S. State Department’s celebration of International Education Week, as well as the report on Massachusetts colleges and universities, can be found on NAFSA’s website.