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‘Dimeji Togunde Increases Global Travel Opportunities for Spelman Students

November 2015

According to the Institute of International Education, only five percent of study abroad students are African American. Spelman College’s Quality Enhancement Plan (QEP) or Spelman Going Global! initiative, administered by the Gordon-Zeto Center for Global Education, aims to increase students’ intercultural understanding and global competence, and provide every Spelman student with global travel experience before graduation. The number of Spelman students who have had a global travel experience has increased from 218 during the 2011-2012 academic year to 367 in 2014-2015. More than 70 percent of the Class of 2015 traveled abroad.

The College’s partnerships with several universities and international organizations including SIT (School for International Training) Study Abroad, Cultural Vistas and the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE); scholarships generated from the Gordon Zeto Center $17 million endowment for global initiatives; administrative support (through fundraising); and faculty/staff buy-in have resulted in students traveling to 43 countries for academic and cultural immersion, international service learning, research and internships.  

‘Dimeji Togunde, Ph.D., associate provost for global education and professor of international studies, leads the Spelman Going Global! initiative and administers the Gordon-Zeto Center for Global Education.  

Prior to joining Spelman College in 2011, Dr. Togunde spent 15 years at Albion College in Michigan, where he held the John S. Ludington Endowed Chair in the Social Sciences as professor of sociology, and served as chair of the Department of Anthropology/Sociology, and director of the Ethnic Studies Program. At Albion, he led a study-travel program on immigration to El Paso/Juarez, served for many years as chair of the global studies curriculum and as co-chair of the strategic plan on global/local diversity initiatives. He received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in demography and social statistics from the Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria, and a Ph.D. in development sociology from Cornell University.

Dr. Togunde can provide perspective on the following aspects of campus internationalization: study abroad, faculty-led study travel program, faculty internationalization, curriculum internationalization, pre-departure orientation and post study abroad integration, internationalization of the STEM, partnership development and assessment of global learning outcomes. 

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