College of Education to Play Host to International Development Conference

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by Brad Duncan

photo of Alan DeYoung
Alan DeYoung

As part of the Open Society Foundations’ (OSF) Faculty Development Fellowship program, faculty members from universities in Eastern Europe and Central Asia spend a semester at a United States university during each of three successive years. These faculty, from countries such as Armenia, Azerbaijan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, then gather each spring at one of the U.S. host universities to present papers on their work as part of the program. In 2012, the University of Kentucky College of Education will play host to the 15th Annual OSF Faculty Development Fellowship Program Spring Conference.

“Transition societies in current republics of the former USSR depend highly upon the knowledge base supplied by universities,” said Alan DeYoung, chair of the UK College of Education Department of Educational Policy Studies and Evaluation (EPE). “The OSF program works intensely with many of the future intellectual and political leaders of these countries who are now located in university teaching roles. We are honored to be invited by the Open Society Foundation to host this conference and work with a number of the junior faculty they have sent to us.”

On May 1 and 2, participants will come together at the UK Student Center for a series of panel discussions and paper presentations from the 45 participants in the 2012 development program. The activities will kick off with greetings from DeYoung and Martha Loerke, director of scholarship program at OSF. Then Ambassador Carey Cavanaugh, director of the UK Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce, will deliver the keynote address, “Diplomacy and Democracy Promotion in the Digital Age.”

Fellowship recipient Nazgul Mingisheva has been working in the UK College of Education during the Spring semester. Mingisheva, from Karaganda University “Bolashak” in Kazakhstan, will discuss “Globalization & Regionalism in Student Preferences of Popular Culture and Media in Modern Kazakhstan” during the two-day conference.

In addition, EPE faculty members Professor John Thelin and Associate Professor Jane Jensen, also from EPE, will join DeYoung in a panel discussion on May 2 to address issues in the internationalization of higher education.

Anyone interested in learning more from the ODF fellowship recipients is welcome to attend the presentations. There is no registration fee, but space is limited at each session. The program schedule is as follows:

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

8:45 – 9 a.m., Greetings
Alan DeYoung, Professor and Chair, EDP
UK Student Center, Center Theater
9 – 10:15 a.m., Keynote Address
“Diplomacy and Democracy Promotion in the Digital Age”
Ambassador Carey Cavanaugh, Director, UK Patterson School of Diplomacy and International Commerce
UK Student Center, Center Theater
10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., Joint Discussion Panel
“Weak States, Fragile Democracies and Strong Leaders in Eastern Europe, Caucasus and Central Asia”
UK Student Center, Room 230
1:15 – 2:45 p.m., Concurrent Panels
“Politics, Elections and Ideology in Post-Soviet Societies”
UK Student Center, Room 205
“Higher Education in Moldova, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan: Reforming Systems, Motivating Students and Preparing Leaders”
UK Student Center, Room 228
“Social Life, Social Work & Social Expectations in Former Socialist Societies: Moldova, Georgia, Mongolia”
UK Student Center, Room 231
3 – 4:30 p.m., Concurrent Panels
“Educational Reforms, Politics & Scholars in the Caucasus and Central Asia”
UK Student Center, Room 205
“Reforming Higher Education in the Caucasus and Central Asia: Experiences, Challenges and Evaluation”
UK Student Center, Room 228
“Teaching, Ideology and Culture”
UK Student Center, Room 231,

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

8:45 – 10:15 a.m., Open Foundations Keynote Address
“Structure of the Open Society Foundations Network”
Ricardo Castro, OSF general counsel
UK Student Center, Center Theater
10:30 – 10:45 a.m., Greetings
Mary John O’Hair, UK College of Education dean
UK Student Center, Room 230
10:45 a.m. – 12:45 p.m., Joint Discussion Panel
“Challenges in the Internationalization of Higher Education: Can Education Quality Be Borrowed?”
UK Student Center, Room 230

For more information on the Open Society Foundations Faculty Development Fellowship Program, visit the official website.