Academic collaboration project brings international students to Shenandoah

Academic collaboration project brings international students to Shenandoah

Date : 08 February 2019

Reported by : dsh

Category : News


WINCHESTER, Va. - Staff and students from universities that are worlds apart are working together to advance higher education.

Shenandoah University students and staff know that communication is key, in classroom settings and just about everywhere else, and thanks to the Barzinji Project, meaningful conversations have been happening all week on Shenandoah's campus, with delegates who came from across the world. 

"The United States being a model of freedom of speech, so it is a good learning experience for us."

Delegates from the International Islamic University of Malasia and the University of Sarajevo in Bosnia along with those from Shenandoah are participating in the project which focuses on civil discourse and building better relationships among cultures on campuses. 

 "All universities and academic non-academic staff especially students have to be exposed to different cultures because we are really living in a global world," Dr. Dzenana Husremovic said.

The two delegates have been working with Shenandoah University and Bridgewater College this week, exploring issues surrounding higher education in a range of political, cultural, and economic environments. Faculty members said they hope the students take this experience in and share it. 

 "I hope that they will actually be the one that spreads the message why we were here among students," Husremovic said.

International Islamic University of Malaysia student, Syahirah Isham, said she plans to do just that

 "It's really good to learn about all these things from different faculties and hopefully get something back and bring it back to Malaysia," International Islamic University of Malaysia student, she said.

The project is named after Jamal Barzingi, an Iraqi-American businessman and humanitarian who aimed to improve higher education by having institutions across countries and cultures collaborate to identify common concerns and share successes. 

"Globalization changes everything, we just can't be in our little corner of it, so we need to understand how other cultures are operating and we can learn a lot from other cultures as well and hopefully they can learn something from us," Adrienne Bloss, Shenandoah University provost said. 

Delegates from Shenandoah University will be visiting Bosnia and Malaysia next month.