Georgia State University Welcomes Distinguished Global and Community Leaders in Honor of the University’s Centennial International Education Month


Marie La Pinchon, Mona Diamond, Turkish Honorary Consul General for the state of Georgia, Dr. Mark Becker, President of Georgia State, Dr. Volkan Topalli, Associate Professor in Georgia State’s Andrew Young School of Policy Studies, and Dr. Risa Palm, Provost of Georgia State, at the 2013 International Honorary Reception to kick-off International Education Month.

Georgia State University recently celebrated five weeks of international programming from October 21 through November 22 for International Education Month.  An extension of the federally supported International Education Week, which is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education, Georgia State expanded the celebration to a month-long event in honor of the university’s centennial.

“As we celebrate Georgia State’s centennial, we look back on 100 years of change and progress to meet the needs of our city and state, and we look to the future knowing that our international initiatives will be key as Atlanta and Georgia continue to rise in importance on the global stage,” said Dr. Mark Becker, president of Georgia State.

International Education Month programming centered on three key themes: business, culture, and policy.

“Through thought-provoking and engaging events led by esteemed politicians, business leaders, and academicians, we feel confident that our 3,000 attendees were able to increase their global competence,” said Dr. Jun Liu, associate provost for international initiatives at Georgia State. “And that is what these five weeks have been all about.”

Georgia State’s emerging-market task force countries – Turkey, Korea, South Africa, Brazil, and China – provided the weekly schedule for more than 60 events, including panels on doing business with China and Brazil.  Ambassador Hermano T. Ribeiro, consul general of Brazil in Atlanta, and Lucia Jennings, president of the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce of the Southeast, along with other Atlanta-area experts on Brazil, served as guest panelists and discussed Brazil’s thriving emerging market in relation to business opportunities and foreign policy developments affecting the country’s place in the world.

A lively panel discussion featuring Derrick Jackson, executive director at the South African American Business Chamber Atlanta, and Vishay Singh, president/CEO of Avax Consulting, Inc., shed light on U.S.-South Africa trade and investment trends, challenges and opportunities.  After learning about U.S. policy toward Korea, Georgia State students were challenged to participate in six-party talk simulations, led by the Korean Economic Institute.

Culture and fine arts also added a colorful element on campus: the university welcomed Chunxia Jin, a decorated tai-chi champion and professor from Huanghe Science & Technology College in Zhengzhou China, who provided free tai-chi group demonstrations to the community, as well as a history lesson on the sport.  Additionally, Georgia State’s own Jung Ha Kim, professor of sociology, demonstrated sa-mul-no-ri Korean drumming, along with other performers from the Southeast Korean Dance Association and the pungmul nori team of CPACS (Center for Pan-American Community Services, Inc.)

International Education Month kicked off its celebration at the International Honorary Reception on October 21, which featured distinguished guests such as Mona Diamond, the Turkish honorary consul general for the state of Georgia, who praised Georgia State’s initiatives in Turkey and advocated for continued partnerships.

“Georgia State University is proud of its international initiatives as we advance our Strategic Plan goal of achieving distinction in globalizing the University,” said Dr. Becker.  “Our students, staff, and faculty serve as global champions in establishing and sustaining Georgia State’s global footprint.”

Click here to view International Education Month’s photo galleries.