Rangel Fellowship Finalist


Rangel finalist Ms. Joy Woods is no stranger to applying for competitive fellowships. Woods was chosen as a Benjamin A. Gilman Scholarship and Freeman-Asia recipient for her year-long study abroad program in Japan, and as a 2021 Critical Language Scholarship recipient for intensive Japanese language study. 

“I decided to apply for the Rangel because of my interest in working in the Foreign Service,” explains Woods. “I was so excited to be chosen as a finalist because I didn’t actually believe that it was something I could accomplish, even with the support of my friends, family, and mentors”.

The Charles B. Rangel Graduate Fellowship Program is a fellowship administered by Howard University that aims to prepare the next generation of Foreign Service Officers, focusing on diversifying the ranks of U.S foreign policymakers. The fellowship offers full funding for a masters program at a U.S. university, two summer internship opportunities, and provides a direct path into the U.S. Foreign Service.

Woods will have her interview on December 1 and will know soon after if she has received the award. Regardless of the outcome, she has a clear plan for her future. “While I know I’ll go into the Foreign Service, I also want to get a PhD one day and teach Political Science and hopefully inspire other young women of color to do the same.”



Rhodes Scholarship

First awarded in 1902, the Rhodes is perhaps the oldest and most prestigious competitive fellowship in the world, funding future leaders’ graduate study at the University of Oxford. Thirty-two US scholars and 67 global scholars are selected each year based upon their intellect, character, and commitment to leadership through service. 

Ms. Christelle Barakat, a graduate student in Peace and Conflict Studies, was selected as a finalist for the Rhodes for the Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine (SJLP) region. Originally from Lebanon, Barakat is currently pursuing her degree at UNCG with the help of a Fulbright Award, another prestigious international scholarship. 

“I decided to apply for Rhodes mainly because of the community of scholars within it, the scholarship’s focus on leadership development, and the criteria of the scholarship which deeply resonated with me. I felt honored to be selected as a finalist.” Hundreds of applicants competed for two Rhodes SJLP scholarships, and Barakat was one of just 11 applicants chosen to interview as a finalist, a major accomplishment.

After she finishes her degree at UNCG, she hopes to go on to get a second masters in Development Studies and ultimately a PhD. Barakat wants to be involved in both the theoretical and the practical aspects of the field, hoping to teach and work with an international organization such as the UN. “I love teaching and transmitting my skills and knowledge to others and I think that research can impact policy and lead to better implementation.”

Belgium Goes Virtual

The Spring 2020 Experience Business Abroad in Belgium participants pose in front of the Gravensteen Castle in Ghent.

In Spring 2020, the world was brought to a virtual halt with the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the learning never stopped for UNCG students on the Experiencing Business Abroad program. After making it back days before borders began to close in March 2020, in 2021 the course was redesigned to be delivered 100% online for the first time. Travel restrictions on in-person travel turned into an unexpected opportunity for virtual collaboration.

The Experience Business Abroad in Belgium program is the result of nearly a decade of collaboration between the Bryan School of Business and Economics at UNCG and the Louvain School of Management (LSM) at the Universite Catholique de Louvain (UCL) in Belgium. This course is designed for students wishing to experience a study abroad program in a limited timeframe.

This program is truly unique among UNCG’s study abroad offerings. Students start the semester collaborating virtually, developing global teams and working on various assignments. Over spring break, UNCG students travel to Belgium to visit their Belgian counterparts, living in their homes and traveling together to visit businesses and cultural sites abroad. LSM students do the same when they travel to spend their spring break in North Carolina, with the coursework culminating in team presentations at the conclusion of their visit to UNCG.

As you can imagine, translating this model to an online-only setting was no easy feat.

Professor Karen Lynden (Lecturer, Department of Management) was up to the challenge. She is a veteran of virtual programs, having been involved with the X-Culture course and conference events for seven years. 

We are incredibly fortunate to have Professor Frank Janssen of Louvain School of Management, one of the founders of this long-running partnership,  co-leading this course.  True in practicing what he teaches, Dr. Janssen was an innovative collaborator in creating an engaging global virtual learning experience for our students.  He brought interactive guest presentations that included entrepreneurs and small business leaders, delivering live forums for all to discuss topics in the current business environment, with unique ‘doing business in’ Belgium and Europe perspectives.   

Although it’s impossible to replicate an in-person experience exactly, students hosted each other virtually, with the UNCG students trying their hands at making Speculoos (aka Lotus cookies), a Belgian national treat and LSM students taking a virtual tour of the International Civil Rights Museum in downtown Greensboro. 

Delivering the course online allowed Lynden to enhance the curriculum through offering pre- and post-project Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) assessment and feedback sessions with IDI certified International Program Center staff; providing additional mini-modules and lessons focused on environmental briefings and culture profiles; and enhanced course ending reflection journals. 

“When I signed up to take this class, I was not happy that I had to take it” said one participant in an anonymous course evaluation. “Obviously I would have loved to [have] been able to go abroad. Even though this class didn’t have any travel, it was amazing to form relationships with foreign students even over zoom/teams. I can say after a few weeks this class became my favorite. The professors put so much work in to still make the time fun for us and I’m so happy I got this study abroad experience even during a pandemic.”

The program is planning to return to the in-person short-term travel abroad model in Spring 2022. However, there are some lessons learned from 2021 that will make their appearance in the course. The ability to create the necessary modifications and restructure the course for a successful experience was due to many internal and external community partners’ willingness to adapt and develop resources and activities.  We are grateful for the UNCG International Programs Team staff, particularly Ms. Heidi Bretz, for working so closely and tirelessly with us to support our ability to provide excellent programming and intercultural learning opportunities for our students.  We look forward with optimism and confidence in knowing we will continue to work together to deliver on our Bryan School mission: 

In the Bryan School of Business & Economics, we create and disseminate knowledge about the theory and practice of business. In addition to our courses and research, we accomplish this through hands-on projects, global experiences, and outreach to the community. Our work produces principled leaders and exceptional problem solvers who have a global perspective, an innovative mindset, a broad understanding of sustainability, and a commitment to improve the organizations in which they work and the communities in which they live.

SAETA Ensemble

SAETA Ensemble presenting how to perform “Chandé” to School of Music percussion students.

The UNCG Percussion Studio hosted the SAETA Ensemble from Bucaramanga, Santander Colombia for a residency from November 3-10, 2021. The Ensemble presented classes on traditional Colombian music to students enrolled in courses in the UNCG School of Music, and also performed as part of the UNCG Percussion’s PASIC Preview Concert on Sunday, November 7. 

In this PASIC Preview concert, the UNCG Percussion premiered a new piece by Professor Jhon Ciro (director of the SAETA Ensemble) who composed CAOS_Abril 21 specifically for the UNCG Percussion Ensemble. This new piece of music encapsulated events happening in Colombia on April 21, where one can hear from sirens, shouting, weeping, to joyful celebration inspired the traditional Colombia rhythm “Chandé.” CAOS_Abril 21 was premiered later in the same week at the Percussive Arts Society’s International Convention (PASIC) in Indianapolis, IN in front of over 550 people.

UNCG Percussion wishes to thank Dr. Maria Anastasiou and Alex Parsons of the UNCG International Programs Center, for their help to receive a special projects award from the Kohler Fund to fund SAETA Ensemble’s visit.

About the SAETA Ensemble:

The SAETA Ensemble is a group made up of students and teachers from the School of Arts of the Industrial University of Santander in Bucaramanga, Santander Colombia. It was born in early 2013 with the aim of generating cultural spaces focused on the dissemination of symphonic percussion instruments in the city and the country through educational concerts and the premiere of works written for this ensemble.

During its creation process, SAETA has had different formats and is currently formed as a quartet. This ensemble has performed various concerts at the Industrial University of Santander, among which its pedagogical work stands out in the 2013 UIS teachers’ concert and the recital “percussion instruments in different chamber formats” in 2014 by Professor Jhon Eduard Cyrus. In addition, this ensemble has participated in didactic concerts for the first-level student induction program organized by the Industrial University of Santander, in 2014, 2015 and 2018, at the Luis A Calvo Auditorium. Likewise, it has participated in the academic meeting between the Industrial University of Santander and the University of Caldas in the city of Manizales with the concert entitled “concert of percussion soloists” held from May 10 to 15, 2016, in the same way, He has participated in the III, IV and V International Percussion Festival in Ibagué, in the I, II, III, IV and V International Percussion Festival in Bucaramanga, 1st International Percussion Festival in Barranquilla and XI International Tamborimba Percussion Festival. For more information about the group, find “saetaensamble” on Instagram!

Eric J. Willie, D.M.A., School of Music

Southern Regional Model United Nations

Using funds from an International Programs Center Kohler Award, seven UNCG students attended the virtual Southern Regional Model United Nations (SRMUN) spring conference in March 2021. This experience was the culmination of PSC 250, a course taught annually by Dr. Michael Broache, that introduces the structure and politics of the United Nations and prepares students to represent a UN Member State at the SRMUN conference.

The UNCG delegation—Matthew Armistead, Jordyn Cooper, Lyra Devane, Meet Doshi, Mohammed Khalafalla, Ashton Ramsammy, and Janasi Rawlings—represented the Kingdom of Denmark on four committees: the General Assembly Plenary, General Assembly Fourth (Special Political) Committee, World Food Program, and NATO.

On each committee, UNCG students collaborated with students representing other UN Member States from institutions around the United States to negotiate resolutions and reports addressing pressing global issues, including sustainable development, cybersecurity, and emergency preparedness, among others. In preparing for their committee roles, students developed substantive expertise about their assigned issues and learned about Denmark’s specific interests relevant to these issues. At the conference, students represented these interests while practicing their negotiation and public speaking skills and working to reach compromise solutions acceptable to the representatives of all delegations.

The UNCG delegation’s hard work both before and during the conference was reflected in the FOUR awards that they earned: Outstanding Delegation Position Paper (overall), Honorable Delegation (overall), Outstanding General Assembly Fourth Committee Position Paper, and General Assembly Plenary Best Committee Delegate. This marked the third consecutive year in which UNCG delegates earned awards at the SRMUN spring conference, and students in PSC 250 will be attending the 2022 conference in Charlotte next spring!

-Dr. Michael Broache, Political Science 

Greensboro Japanese Speech Contest 2021

The 1st Greensboro Japanese Speech Contest (GJSC) was held on the UNCG campus in 2016.  Since then, Japanese language students from UNCG, Wake Forest University, Guilford College, and High Point Central High School have come to our campus every spring to deliver their original speeches in Japanese.  And every year since the beginning, the Kohler Award has played a pivotal role in making the event a success.   
The GJSC is designed to be less a competition and more a community celebration of the participants’ commitment to learning a new language and engaging with a new culture. Simultaneous English translations ensure that the annual audience of family, fellow students, community members and faculty can all enjoy the students’ presentations. Videos, music, photobooths, audience contests (with prizes) and Japanese snacks and sodas add fun.

A panel of judges led by a senior official from the Japanese Consulate in Atlanta decides who wins special prizes in the beginning, intermediate and advanced contest categories but everyone goes home a winner.  Thanks in large part to the Kohler Award, every year all contestants and volunteers receive the t-shirt designed for that year’s contest and a certificate of appreciation for their hard work.  


Last spring, ongoing COVID restrictions prohibited an in-person contest; however, the Kohler Award covered web design and hosting fees making it possible for the 5th GJSC to go online.  The creativity of the online 5th GJSC presentations – including poems, songs, anime, stop action and VR shorts, and even a one-man mini-spooky movie – was so outstanding that the Japanese Consulate awarded two UNCG students, the 1st prize winners from the intermediate and advanced categories, roundtrip travel to Japan for a two-week guided tour of the country.  If not for the 2021 Kohler Award, it couldn’t have happened.

Article written by Dr. Yosei Sugawara, P.h.D., Language, Literatures, and Cultures 

Expected downtime for WUBS Upgrade: Please initiate any needed quotes by 5p on Friday Feb 12th, Friday Feb 26th, and Friday March 19th.

There will be three maintenance windows to support upgrade activities:

Saturday, February 13th: 9:00 a.m. M.S.T. – 2:00 p.m. M.S.T.

Saturday, February 27th: 9:00 a.m. M.S.T. – 9:00 p.m. M.S.T.

Saturday, March 20th: 9:00 a.m. M.S.T. – 9:00 p.m. M.S.T.

If you have any questions or issues, please contact IPC at (336) 334-5404.

Western Union Business Solutions is a service that allows you to transfer money from your home bank account to a U.S. account. For troubleshooting, please refer to this guide.

Hi Everyone,

The International Program Center (IPC) continues to operate at full processing capacity with some staff returning to the office beginning August 10, 2020.  There will be no more than 50% of the staff in the office each day to maintain social distance guidelines. The office will have a modified schedule with no walk-in visitors.     

IPC will continue providing full-service support services via phones, email, and Zoom. Our standard appointments will be virtual, but face to face appointments, if preferred, will be available by appointment. Students can make appointments by calling the main office at 336-334-5404. There will not be any same day appointments available.   

The IPC staff are available by phone or for face to face appointments Monday – Friday from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm. Our staff is also available via phone (336-334-5404) and email (ipcadmin@uncg.edu). Please find a full list of IPC staff here.

Please note that while we are not seeing visitors on a walk-in basis, the phone lines, email box, and website are available to assist students with questions.

Take care and stay safe!

IPC Team

Phone Hours:

Monday – Friday: 9am – 4pm

Face to Face Hours:

By appointment only

Monday – Friday: 9am – 4pm

Office Hours: 

Monday – Friday: 8am – 5pm 

Cecilie Kjaeldgaard
Cecilie Kjaeldgaard

Cecile Roselund Kjaelgaard is an international degree seeking student from Copenhagen Business School. She is obtaining her masters in Business and Politics.

IPC: Why did you choose to come to UNCG?
CRK: I wanted to experience the real American college feeling in a small American city.

IPC: What do you enjoy most about studying at UNCG?
CRK: I would have to say the facilities and campus. I’ve also been very engaged with and motivated by the professors and staff here.

IPC: What is the most impactful lesson you’ve learned from studying in a new country?
CRK: Everyone is different and it takes respect and compassion to study abroad.

IPC: What advice do you have for students who want to study here?
CRK: Go for it- you will have the best experience of your life.

headshot_new - Shelby Morris
Shelby Morris

Shelby Morris is a returning study abroad student from the University of Oulu in Oulu, Finland. She is a junior majoring in Elementary and Special Education.

IPC: Why did you choose to study in Oulu?
SM: I chose to study abroad in Oulu mainly because Finland has one of the strongest education programs in the world. In addition, not many people I know have been to Finland before, and I wanted to gain a unique experience of living in a foreign country I was not really familiar with. Many of my friends also had been to Oulu and seemed to really enjoy their time there.

IPC: Why is having a study abroad experience in college so important to you?
SM: I believe that having a study abroad experience in college is important because it is one of the only times in your life that you are able to leave your life behind and travel and live in another country. I think that it also allows you to gain global experiences in college that can become very useful when you are applying for jobs. I now have a wealth of experience that I can share with my students in the future.

IPC: What was the most impactful lesson you learned while studying abroad?
SM: The most important lesson I learned while studying abroad was the importance of going with the flow. Many times, I was presented with situations where I had to adapt very quickly and learn from those around me. Whether it was travelling for an hour in the wrong direction on the bus or not being able to communicate with Finnish citizens in their native language, I often had to approach these challenges with faith that things would work out okay in the end.

IPC: Why would you recommend that other students to have a study abroad experience?
SM: I would recommend other students to study abroad because it allows you to step outside your comfort zone and meet so many people from all over the world. In addition, in the classes that you take with other exchange students you are exposed to a wide variety of new opinions and ideas on different topics. Finally, take a risk! You never know what experiences and opportunities are available beyond the United States.