The mission of the Dr. George H. Bennett Office for International Education (OIE) is to provide leadership and support to strengthen the global dimensions of teaching, learning, research, and service activities at Virginia State University.OIE is committed to enhancing the international expertise of faculty and professional staff at VSU and ensuring that VSU students have opportunities to attain an appropriate level of international knowledge and cross-cultural competence needed to participate fully and successfully in a global society.
The Dr. George H. Bennett OIE seeks to facilitate the internationalization of under-graduate, graduate, and professional curricula across schools and disciplines, promoting international scholarship and educational exchange, pedagogical innovation, collaboration, global workforce readiness,and other activities that broaden the base of international knowledge and global awareness among the University community and its stakeholders.
Develop and expand international education opportunities for students (study abroad, service learning, exchanges, internships, research, etc.).
Assist VSU faculty and professional staff in developing the international dimension of their teaching, research, and service activities.
Promote the revision and expansion of undergraduate/graduate curricula to reflect a global perspective in all fields of study and to facilitate the integration of international components into programs of study.
Develop and establish internationally oriented research and service partnerships with government agencies, the private sector, business and civic groups, and alumni.
Develop and expand institutional linkages and partnerships with international colleges and universities.
Establish and maintain an administrative structure for university-wide coordination of initiatives related to international education and access to information and resources.
Collection and dissemination of information related to university international initiatives
The Dr. George H. Bennett Office for International Education was founded in April 2005 in honor of the late George H. Bennett, a VirginiaStateUniversity alumnus whose expertise in international affairs impacted diplomats worldwide. A generous endowment from his widow, the late Mrs. Jesse Davis Bennett, a VSU alumna, made possible the establishment of the Office, which opened in Fall 2006. Mrs. Bennett was a native of Virginia.
Dr. Bennett’s distinguished career included positions at the United Nations Institute for Training and Research (UNITAR): Senior Officer-in-Charge of Fellowships, Chief of Programmes and Special Projects, and Chief of Project administration. He supervised a number of individuals who went on to hold high positions in the diplomatic world.
At the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), headquartered in Paris, Dr. Bennett supervised Guidance and Vocational Counseling Services for the New York area and Puerto Rice and later served as Educational Specialist and Program Advisor in the Philippines. He also served as Director of the Asia-Africa Department at the Institute of International Education (IIE).
Dr. Bennett helped found the US/South Africa Leader Exchange Program (US-SALEP). Conceived in 1958, the group worked to achieve racial integration and continues to promote exchange between the U.S. and South Africa, helping develop South Africa’s future leaders.
Dr. Bennett was a World War II veteran, a life member of the VSU Alumni Association, and a member of Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity.
The Office for International Education recognizes the following core values as the foundation of a globally competent student body, faculty, administration, and staff.
Instilling these values through appropriate programs and activities is fundamental to the activities sponsored by the Office for International Education.
Virginia State University Dr. George H. Bennett Office for International Education