"By developing and providing access to multidisciplinary programs offering skill development in areas ranging from languages to international cultures and business practices, these initiatives will make Oregon known not just for salmon, track, natural wonders, and football, but for a new, pragmatic internationalism."
In 2009, the Provost of the University of Oregon solicited “Big Ideas” for the university and selected five to be pursued (here). Two were international in theme: “Global Oregon” (here) and “The Americas in a Globalized World” (here). Together they recently resurfaced in a $1.4 million funding proposal at the May 3rd meeting of the Academic Strategies Committee of the Oregon Board of Higher Education. The Committee, unfortunately, did not select the “The Americas in a Globalized World/ Global Oregon Initiative” as a priority for consideration by the full Board of Higher Education on June 1.
From the written proposal to the Academic Strategies Committee (here, pp. 127-130):
In preparing students and the state for increasingly diverse and globalized markets, research priorities, and workplaces, one of the greatest challenges the University of Oregon and other AAU institutions face is how to link its pursuit of equity and diversity with its efforts to internationalize curricula and research. In order to be a world-class university, the University of Oregon needs to engage in a paradigm shift that will help students, faculty, staff, alumni, and all Oregonians to see themselves from a hemispheric perspective in order to succeed at home and abroad. Thinking about the United States as part of a larger community of nations and nation-states in the Western Hemisphere, sharing a long history and the urgency to build a sustainable future, will allow our academic community to pursue a vigorous and innovative research and teaching agenda and to foster a culture of engagement and dialogue with other peoples throughout the Americas. With particular project foci in China and Mexico, the Americas in a Globalized World and Global Oregon Initiatives address the complicated, yet fruitful, relationship between international understanding and domestic cultural competency. It is precisely by successfully linking concerns over access, diversity, and equity in the United States with a hemispheric model of internationalization that the UO can take the lead. The new paradigms championed by the UO will equip it to offer responses to this challenge that understand U.S. socio-economic and political processes within larger global and hemispheric contexts. By developing and providing access to multidisciplinary programs offering skill development in areas ranging from languages to international cultures and business practices, these initiatives will make Oregon known not just for salmon, track, natural wonders, and football, but for a new, pragmatic internationalism.