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Scenes from The University of Rhode Island

URI professor earns national leadership award for advancing international education

Media Contact: Todd McLeish, 401-874-7892

KINGSTON, R.I. -- May 19, 2004 -- The National Association of State Universities and Land Grant Colleges has announced that it is awarding a University of Rhode Island professor with its most prestigious award for furthering international education in the United States.

John Grandin, a URI professor of German and executive director of the University's International Engineering Program, will receive the Michael P. Malone International Leadership Award from the association's Commission on International Programs at its summer meeting in Costa Mesa, Cal. in July.

Established in 2000, the award recognizes outstanding contributions toward furthering international education at state and land-grant institutions. Ronald Henry, provost of Georgia State University, will also receive the award.

"There were 26 highly-accomplished professionals nominated for the 2004 Malone Award, and John Grandin's accomplishments stood out," said Nancy Zimpher, president of the University of Cincinnati and chair of the commission. "He has made tremendous contributions to advancing international education and deserves to be nationally recognized for his outstanding work."

A resident of Wakefield, Grandin co-founded in 1986 the URI International Engineering Program (IEP), which requires students to major in an engineering discipline and in German, Spanish or French. Students study abroad in a country where their chosen language is spoken, and they do an internship at an international company in that country as well.

"As a result of Dr. Grandin's efforts, the IEP attracts the best of the best to our programs in German, Spanish and French, and graduates of the IEP are among those in most demand by global corporations," said Winifred Brownell, dean of the URI College of Arts and Sciences, which runs the IEP in collaboration with the URI College of Engineering.

In addition to creating the International Engineering Program, Grandin has managed the German Summer School of the Atlantic, a residential program in the German language and culture offered each summer at URI; established an exchange program between URI and the Technical University at Braunschweig (Germany); developed an acclaimed annual conference on international engineering programs which is hosted by URI every autumn; co-organized the URI Honors Colloquium "The Futures of Globalization" in the fall of 2003; and developed URI's German-Across-the-Curriculum program. He also has served as associate dean and acting dean of the College of Arts and Sciences.

Grandin was recognized by the German government in 1989 with the highest award it bestows upon non-citizens, the Federal Cross of Merit, for extraordinary service on behalf of the German language and culture in the United States.