AIEA Town Hall Discussions

Current AIEA members are invited to take part in AIEA's virtual COVID-19 Town Hall meetings, which take place on Fridays at 1:00 p.m. Eastern. Originally scheduled weekly, these meetings are moving to twice a month in June 2020. 

Guidelines for COVID-19 Town Hall meetings are available online. 

AIEA Town Halls are a benefit for current members. If there are others who you think would benefit from participating, you are encouraged to invite them to join AIEA.  Chat transcripts from past Town Halls are available online for current members. 

Many thanks to the Professional Development and Engagement Committee, co-chaired by Erich Dietrich and Meredith McQuaid, for their leadership on this initiative.
Town Hall Conversations: 2nd and 4th Fridays at 1:00 PM EDT - image of zoom meeting with participants

Upcoming Town Hall Discussions:   

August—Partnered Town Hall in conjunction with Terra Dotta: “The Future of International Education: Why Agility Is Now Integral to Strategic Planning”

Past Town Halls 

July 24, 1:00 p.m. EDT 
The Evolution of U.S. Immigration Regulations
Moderator: Meredith McQuaid (University of Minnesota)
Presenters: Tina Rousselot de Saint Céran (Georgia Institute of Technology), Marissa Hill-Dongre, (University of Minnesota), Sherif Barsoum (New York University)

As a follow up to the July 10 AIEA Town Hall, "Recent Immigration Changes and their Impact on International Students and Scholars in the U.S.," this discussion will continue to explore the ramifications of U.S. immigration regulations on our students, and consider what might come next under the current administration. This Town Hall also included initial discussion and interpretation of the recently released information on student visas (released July 24).

Access recording (current AIEA members only; log-in required) 

July 10, 1:00 p.m. EDT 
Recent Immigration Changes and their Impact on International Students and Scholars in the U.S.
Moderator: Adel el Zaïm (University of Ottawa)
Presenters: Tina Rousselot de Saint Céran (Georgia Institute of Technology), Marissa Hill-Dongre, (University of Minnesota), Thomas Bogenschild (Gateway International Group)

Access recording (current AIEA members only; log-in required) 

June 26, 1:00 p.m. EDT 
The Future of Study Abroad 
Presenters: Stephanie Doscher (Florida International University), Stephen D. McDowell (Florida State University), Tim Lewis (University of St. Thomas)

Daniel Kahneman, Nobel Prize-winning economist and author of Thinking, Fast and Slow, cautions leaders not to get stuck in the “narrative fallacy,” a memory loop that limits plans for the future to slight variations on the past. This Town Hall meeting will provoke decision-makers to engage in divergent, exploratory thinking about future forms of study abroad. Participants will experience futures thinking exercises that they can then implement with diverse teams on their home campuses.

Access recording (current AIEA members only; log-in required) 

June 12, 1:00 p.m. EDT 
How International Education Can Contribute to Social and Racial Justice
Moderator: Erich Dietrich (New York University)
Presenters: Jewell Winn (Tennessee State University), Andrew Gordon (Diversity Abroad), and Rajika Bhandari (IC3 Institute)

Access recording (current AIEA members only; log-in required) 

While higher education holds the promise and potential as a great equalizer in society, we must confront the reality that it has often reproduced both inequality and exclusion. As we strive to respond to racism and injustice and to shift toward more equitable access and outcomes, what is the role of international education? Panelists will provide perspectives on how SIOs can provide leadership in this area, including equitable domestic and international student mobility, campus internationalization, and international partnerships.

Rajika Bhandari is President and CEO of the IC3 Institute. A nonprofit leader and scholar-practitioner, she spent over a decade at the Institute of International Education, leading IIE’s thought leadership initiatives and its global research and impact studies on student and scholar mobility, including the Open Doors Report. An expert in international higher education, Bhandari is a frequent speaker and widely published author with a forthcoming book on the international student experience.

Andrew Gordon is a social entrepreneur and CEO & Founder of Diversity Abroad, which was founded in 2006 to equip the next generation of young people from diverse and underrepresented backgrounds with the global acumen to thrive in the 21st-century interconnected world and workforce. Andrew speaks, writes, and consults extensively on equitable access to global education. He is a graduate of the University of San Francisco and has studied, worked, and traveled to over 54 countries.

Jewell Winn provides leadership to the office of International Affairs at Tennessee State University as the Senior International Officer, Deputy Chief Diversity Officer, and Assistant Professor in the Department of Educational Leadership. Her research interests include the intersection of diversity and international affairs, global strategies for minority serving institutions, cultural competence in theory and practice, and the acculturation of international students. 

May 29, 1:00 p.m. EDT 
Is our field (and job) in Jeopardy?: Adapting and Re-inventing Internationalization of Higher Education to the After-COVID19 New "Normal" 
Moderator: Adel el Zaïm  (University of Ottawa)
Presenter: Francisco Marmolejo (Qatar Foundation) 

Access recording (current AIEA members only; log-in required) 

The scenario for higher education in the after-COVID19 era is not precisely positive. Leaders of colleges and universities will face painful decisions in order to keep afloat institutions. But, do they consider internationalization as key component of the “new normal”, or they think that it is relatively marginal?  Sadly, the traditional business model behind the internationalization strategy of institutions -mostly focused on student mobility- has shown its fragility. Adapting and re-inventing the approach, rationale and activities, of internationalization strategies is both, urgent and needed. At the Town-Hall meeting we will discuss options and will exchange ideas.


May 22, 1:00 p.m. EDT
COVID-19 - The Change Accelerator for Higher Education's International Practice and Programs: Turning Challenge to Opportunity
Moderator: Adel el Zaïm (University of Ottawa)
Presenter: John Hudzik (Michigan State University) 

John Hudzik presents at an AIEA Town Hall Discussion

Access recording (current AIEA members only; log-in required) 

May 15, 2020, 1:00 p.m. EDT
How to Support International Students during COVID-19
Moderator: Meredith McQuaid (University of Minnesota) 
Presenters: Carolyn Stefanco (President, The College of Saint Rose), Alfredo Valera (Associate Vice President, Global Affairs, The College of Saint Rose), Caroline Mangan (UCD), Hanna Sun (University of Minnesota) 

Friday, May 8
Open COVID-19 Discussion among SIOs
Moderator: Adel el Zaïm 

Friday, May 1 
Leadership for the Future (and From a Distance)
Moderators:  Marcellus Caldas and Maria Anastasiou
Presenters: J
oanna Regulska,  John Lucas, Sufei Li

Friday, April 24
International Partnerships after COVID-19
Moderators: Erich Dietrich, Susan Popko
Presenters: Jane Gatewood, Peter Lennie, Erik Lithander

Friday, April 17
What IE Leaders Need to Know about Virtual Exchange
Moderators: Lisa Lancia, Stephanie Doscher
Presenters: Eva Haug, GianMaria Besana

Friday, April 3
Communication during COVID-19
Moderator: Meredith McQuaid
Presenters: Ben Waxman, Paaige Turner, Judy Peter, Jose Celso Friere Jr.

Friday, March 27
Open Discussion
Moderators: Adel el Zaïm, members of the Professional Development and Engagement Committee
Presenters: Eny di Iorio, Sylvain St-Amand

Friday, March 13
Open Discussion
Moderators: David Fleshler, members of the Professional Development and Engagement Committee

COVID-19 Town Hall Meeting Guidelines

AIEA Virtual Town Hall Discussions are intended as a way for AIEA members to discuss the ever-changing situation and challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Participants have two ways of sharing information: through verbal discussion during the Town Hall discussions, as well as in the Town Hall chat. 

Both of these methods can be used to ask questions, respond to queries, and/or provide resources relevant to the current issue or topic covered by the town hall. 

The chat may be used to pose questions and resources relevant to COVID-19 and internationalization that may or may not be directly related to the specific topics covered by the town hall. 

The discussion and Town Hall chat should not be used to: 

  • Advertise commercial products and services 
  • Announce activities which are not clearly relevant to senior-level international educators
  • Forward "chain letters," warnings of "'virus threats," or "test" messages.
  • Express grievances on personal or local issues.
  • Discuss personal political/religious beliefs and/or serve as a “soapbox” on issues
  • Promote institutional programs and/or recruit participants  
  • Discuss non-internationalization related issues 

Town Hall Discussions are open to all current AIEA members – please do not send access information to others. 

If you are uncertain whether the content of your messages is appropriate, please send an email to the AIEA Secretariat and ask for advice. Participants who do not adhere to these guidelines may be removed from the Town Hall.