Quandt named Vice Provost for International Affairs
new high-level post has been created, that of Vice Provost for
International Affairs, based upon the top recommendation of the
Activities Planning Commission, one of the four Virginia
2020 committees charged with envisioning the University's
third century. William B. Quandt, the Edward R. Stettinius Professor
of Government and
Foreign Affairs, has been chosen to provide the University-wide
leadership the commission believes to be a critical factor in
promoting the coordination and expansion of international activities
a report finalized this spring, the commission identified numerous
successful international programs at the University, but many
rest on the shoulders of individual faculty members and are not
widely known outside their sponsoring departments. This limits
opportunities for interdisciplinary participation and the sharing
of successful models among disciplines, said Quandt.
"We wanted to create a center point, not centralize international
activities, which are occurring all over," said Brantly Womack,
chair of the international commission. "Without coordination
or encouragement, the activities are occurring in a piecemeal
fashion and we're not creating a coherent foreign presence. Worthwhile
opportunities are not being pursued. We want to change this."
The commission also recommended the creation of an All-University
Advisory Council and the establishment of a "significant"
incentive budget, creating a program similar to the one adopted
by Duke University five years ago, according to Quandt. Duke was
one of five schools in the aspiration group studied by the commission,
along with Cornell University, Michigan State University, New
York University and the University of Wisconsin.
commission's goal is not to create a new bureaucracy, but to expand
existing programs which have the potential of becoming internationally
recognized centers of excellence by removing barriers that inhibit
participation, and to launch new initiatives that fit well with
U.Va.'s strengths, Quandt said.
a former member of the National Security Council and Middle East
expert who was actively involved in the Camp David accords under
President Jimmy Carter, is serving a two-year appointment as vice
provost for international affairs while an international search
is conducted for a permanent replacement.
together, the commission's recommendations envision nothing short
of a cultural transformation at U.Va., incorporating an awareness
of international issues across disciplines and throughout the
"What does it mean to make this an international university?"
asked Womack. "It means that most students need to see the
world as part of their U.Va. experience."
that is what characterizes the leading schools in the field, according
to the planning commission's report: "'International' becomes
normal and universities, such as New York University or Cornell
University, accept and encourage their international dimension
as part of their basic identity. Moreover, their international
achievements have become a central part of their claim to academic
present, U.Va. is not highly ranked in terms of international
activities, the commission found. It ranks about 40th overall
-- 37th in the percentage of foreign scholars on Grounds; 66th
in percentage of foreign students enrolled; and with only about
16 percent of its students studying abroad, U.Va. falls well below
the 30-40 percent levels common at its peer institutions. Duke
now sends 44 percent of its students abroad at some point in their
university careers, according to Bruce Kuniholm, vice provost
for international affairs at Duke.
of the commission's goals is to see 80 percent of U.Va. undergraduates
participating in study abroad by 2020.
The U.Va. commission outlined five main elements of a strong international
program: 1) sending more U.Va. students and faculty abroad; 2)
internationalizing the curriculum; 3) hosting more international
students and scholars; 4) fostering international liaisons; and
5) sponsoring international activities.
has already embarked on initiatives in several of these areas,
including the long-standing programs in the study of language,
literature and culture in Valencia, Spain, and other countries,
an architecture program in Venice, Italy, and a commerce program
in Bath, England. Closer to home, the University is establishing
a new international residential college, which is expected to
be ready by the fall of 2001, and a new building for residential
language programs, which should be completed in the fall of 2002.
commission's recommendations for new programs include the creation
of an International Institute of American Studies, which would
build on U.Va.'s strong library collection in Americana; an Institute
of American Language and Culture, which would promote the teaching
of English as a second language, among other initiatives, both
for undergraduates studying in the United States for the first
time and for graduate students becoming teaching assistants; and
a Center for International Medicine, building on existing programs
at the School of Medicine.
commission also addressed ways in which existing programs can
be improved and expanded, especially the International Studies
Office. In particular, the commission found that the current infrastructure
serving students and faculty members studying abroad is woefully
inadequate. For example, a good staff-to-student ratio for study
abroad programs is 1-to-50 to 1-to-100. At U.Va., the current
ratio is 1-to-500, according to the commission's report.
Visa services and housing assistance for visiting international
students and scholars have likewise been lacking. A good ratio
of staff-to-international students is 1-to-300; at U.Va., the
current ratio is 1-to-659.
While the U.Va. commission has not recommended a budget, Kuniholm
said that Duke has earmarked $20 million in its current capital
campaign to fund international initiatives. "You need a combination
of vision and implementation," he said.
expects to spend the coming months working to expand the International
Studies Office, updating and improving the International Studies
Office Web page and establishing contacts with faculty members
and administrators throughout the University. He also will be
working closely with the administration and development office
to establish priorities, estimate costs and determine ways of
raising the necessary funds.
don't think we should study this to death," Quandt said.
"We need to do it."