Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Virginia Tech partners with Effat University in Saudi Arabia

Virginia Tech's Ian Leuschner, left, director of International Support Services, and Donald Back, director of the Language and Culture Institute, join Effat University President Haifa Jamal Al-Lail and Lisa Zuppé, director of international affairs, for the signing ceremony in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Virginia Tech has signed a four-year agreement with Effat University in Saudi Arabia to develop a world-class college preparation program.

The agreement, signed during the International Exhibition and Conference on Higher Education in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, calls for the Language and Culture Institute to assist in improving the Effat English Academy.

“Such partnerships help advance Virginia Tech as a global land-grant leader because they promote a global exchange of ideas in teaching, research, and engagement,” LCI Director Donald Back said. “We are building connections that will help expose Virginia Tech students to people of other nations and other cultures while helping our two institutions address common needs.”

Read more about this partnership at VT News.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Student's volleyball team takes 2nd place at national tournament

LCI student Abdulrahman Alghamdi and his teammates on the Virginia Tech Men's Volleyball Club B team returned recently from Kansas City, Missouri, where they placed second in their division at the National Collegiate Volleyball Federation's National Championship Tournament.

Alghamdi, who's known as Bosha, says more than 400 teams competed in the tournament. He wrote a bit about his time in Kansas City  and about his gratitude for Virginia Tech.

Together we inspire, together we achieve


My name is Abdulrahman Alghamdi, and my nickname is Bosha. I am a student at the Virginia Tech Language and Culture Institute. I have been in the U.S. for six months. I am proud to represent my country, the kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

I joined the Virginia Tech Men's Volleyball Club team. We played several tournaments away from Virginia Tech. The last tournament was the National Collegiate Club Volleyball Championships in Kansas City. There were more than 400 teams that participated in this tournament. We played many matches, and we got the second place after we lost the final game.

I want to say thank you so much to many people who supported me always, the LCI management, and my professors. They always help and encourage me.

Thank you to the club and all the guys I have practiced with. We did a great season. They have supported me from the start. I really appreciate it, and it has been the most beautiful time with them.

Thank you, Virginia Tech, for providing everything we need, and I hope to make more achievements for the name of Virginia Tech. Finally, I feel pride and gratitude for VT.

Monday, April 17, 2017

Students head to the Mall for monuments and cherry blossoms

Students and staff from the National Capital Region took a field trip recently to see the National Mall and the famous cherry blossoms. They got to see the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, as well as the area's beautiful cherry blossom trees.

See more photos and read students' essays about their trip below:

LCI represents Virginia Tech at Kuwait's largest international education exhibition

Jacqueline L. Nottingham meets H.E. Dr. Mohammad Abdulatif Mohammad Al Fares, Kuwait's minister of education and higher education.

Jacqueline L. Nottingham, the LCI's assistant director for admissions and recruitment, represented Virginia Tech this month at Kuwait's largest international higher-education exhibition.

EDUEx aims to help Kuwaiti students understand the various paths they can pursue for their future studies, and guide them in selecting majors based on their interests. Universities from 10 different countries, including more than 20 from the United States, were represented at the event.

EDUEx was supported by Kuwait's Ministry of Higher Education, under the auspices of H.E. Dr. Mohammad Abdulatif Mohammad Al Fares, the country's minister of education and higher education. He stopped by Virginia Tech's booth and talked with Nottingham about the university.

The LCI booth at EDUEx 2017 in Kuwait.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Virginia Tech ranked among the world's best in 21 subjects

The annual Destinations Career Fair gives hospitality and tourism management students at Virginia Tech an opportunity to meet with industry recruiters.
Virginia Tech has the world’s sixth-best hospitality and leisure management program, according to a global ranking of more than 4,400 colleges and universities.

The university was ranked among the world’s elite institutions in 21 of the 46 subjects and in all five broad fields evaluated in the latest QS World University Ratings by Subject. Virginia Tech’s minerals and mining engineering program was ranked No. 39. Overall, the university was ranked among the top 100 in eight subjects.

"These rankings only confirm what we have been hearing for years from prospective students in countries around the globe — that Virginia Tech is a university with a world-class reputation,” said Don Back, director of the Language and Culture Institute, which recruits international students to the university. “The fact that we ranked so highly in all five subject areas proves what a thoroughly comprehensive university Virginia Tech is.”

Read more at VT News.

Friday, January 27, 2017

Meet two new Humphrey Fellowship staffers

The LCI is pleased to welcome two new employees who will help run this year's Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship program.

Jon Dworin, a former instructor at the LCI, is returning as program coordinator. Sarah V. Liu will be a program aide.

Jon Dworin
For Dworin, it's deja vu all over again, he says. "It's great to be back at LCI, and I'm really excited to be serving in my new role with the Humphrey Fellows this year."

Dworin, his fiancee, Cathie, and their dog, Ama, moved to Blacksburg about five years ago. Before that, Dworin, who studied international relations and education and had been a middle school teacher in Maryland, served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Honduras and as a member of the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps on the West Coast.

"I've been working on various entrepreneurial endeavors recently," Dworin says, "and I've developed a passion for community-building in low-impact development neighborhoods,"

In his spare time, he enjoys "all the natural beauty and adventure that the New River Valley has to offer." He also coaches a boys soccer team — "just for kicks."

Sarah V. Liu
Liu is a master's candidate in the Department of Human Nutrition, Foods, and Exercise in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech, from which she also received her bachelor's degree.

She also volunteers 12 hours per week as an EMT with the Christiansburg Rescue Squad.

Liu, a second-generation immigrant, says her interest in working with the international community stems from living in the Residential Leadership Community during her freshman year as well as working in the former Office for Inclusion and Diversity, which exposed her to issues of social justice and diversity.

Outside of school, Liu's interests include weightlifting, roller-skating, cooking ethnic cuisines, traveling, and reading.

The Humphrey Fellowship program brings accomplished young and midcareer professionals from developing nations and emerging democracies to the U.S. for a year of professional ­development and related academic study.

The LCI provides the long-term English training program component of the Fellows' experience,