Northwest College

Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Languages Grant (UISFL)

We are thrilled to announce that in August of 2020, the Office of Intercultural Programs (OIP) at Northwest College and the Office of International Studies at Montana State University Billings (MSUB) in Billings, MT, were awarded a 3-year Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language (UISFL) grant through the International and Foreign Language program at the US Department of Education. The purpose of this grant is to provide funds to plan, develop and carry out programs that will help strengthen and improve undergraduate instruction in international studies and foreign languages.

NWC and MSUB are one of only 32 U.S. universities to receive such funding, and the only institutions in Wyoming, Montana, South Dakota and North Dakota to be funded.

Primary Goals of the UISFL Grant

The objectives of the project are to strengthen and improve undergraduate instruction in international studies and foreign languages both at NWC and MSUB. Grant funds will be used to revise and update curricula, develop faculty expertise and add language instruction at both institutions. Some funds will support student study abroad in East Asia. The NWC and MSU Billings UISFL project will greatly enhance faculty expertise in international studies and East Asia in Wyoming and Montana. Over the course of the 3-year grant period, 25 faculty will receive funds to revise curricula and to travel to East Asian partner universities. Over 6,000 undergraduate students in a largely under-represented area will have full access to the activities and outcomes of the project (Global Studies Certificate, International Studies Minor –East Asia Track, Study Abroad, language instruction), thereby increasing their career prospects, especially in relation to service in areas of national need.

NWC and MSUB will use grant funds to increase opportunities for undergraduate students to grow their global skills by:

  • Accessing a new interdisciplinary Global Skills Certificate Program and International Studies Minor, focusing on East Asian studies
  • Increasing faculty expertise in Global Skills learning outcomes and East Asian studies in service of these programs.

There are 7 main objectives of this project:

  • Increase faculty expertise in global studies, with priority given to East Asia
  • Create new and revise existing MSUB and NWC courses with focus on global studies and East Asia
  • Develop and implement an interdisciplinary Global Studies Certificate Program
  • Increase participation in Study Abroad Programs in Korea, Japan, and China
  • Develop language programs in less commonly taught languages (Chinese, Japanese, Korean)
  • Develop a bi-annual Global Studies Seminar
  • Form a Global Studies Advisory Committee

UISFL Grants and Support for Faculty

Part of this multi-year grant from the International Studies and Foreign Languages Office of the Department of Education supports increasing faculty expertise in international studies, with a focus on the East Asian countries of China, Japan, and Korea, but also in other world areas.

NWC and MSUB are managing a competitive process to award 7 UISLF (pronounced ‘useful’) Course Development Travel Grants of $6,000 each to NWC and MSUB faculty. In 2021, five grants were awarded (three for NWC faculty and two for MSUB faculty), and in 2022 and 2023, we expect to award 9 grants each year.

The UISFL Course Development Travel Grants are to be used to promote two purposes:

  • The development of faculty expertise in global studies, with a priority given to East Asian Studies (China, Japan, and Korea).
  • The development of Global Studies courses and learning outcomes at NWC and MSUB.

The $6,000 grants are to be used to support the design of new courses or the re-design of existing courses to include demonstrable, measurable Global Studies Learning Outcomes. The courses that are developed from this grant will allow NWC to create a Global Studies Certificate Program, to be earned by students after taking a certain number of classes that qualify as Global Studies courses. It is expected that all courses developed by this program will fall into this rubric.

The funds are also to be used for travel to one of MSUB’s partner universities in East Asia to work closely with the faculty and administrators in the service of the program goals. It is expected that faculty will develop new relationships with colleagues that will lead to a clearer understanding of how Global Studies can be added to one’s teaching and research interests. NWC faculty could also solicit guest virtual lecturers for their own classes.  An important program goal is to make the Global Studies Certificate Program truly interdisciplinary so that students at NWC and MSUB have an opportunity for global engagement.

All full-time, tenured, or tenure-track faculty at NWC are encouraged to apply. NWC faculty should submit their final proposals by March 21, 2022 to the Office of Intercultural Programs (ORB 111). Final proposals can also be emailed to Amanda Enriquez (amanda.enriquez@nwc.edu) or Kara Ryf (kara.ryf@nwc.edu).  A selection committee, led by NWC faculty and staff, will determine which proposals are funded each year. We expect to notify successful applicants by April 11, 2022.

Faculty Grant Applications & Budget Template

For more information on the UISFL grant or the UISFL grants for faculty, please stop by the Office of Intercultural Programs (ORB 111) or email Amanda Enriquez at amanda.enriquez@nwc.edu

Partner Universities Associated with the UISFL Program

UISFL Language and Study Abroad Scholarships for NWC Students 

Funding by the Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Language (UISFL) program has been awarded to NWC and MSUB to develop new study abroad programs for Japan, South Korea, and China. All full-time NWC students are eligible for these programs. Students will begin language studies at NWC or MSUB before studying at one of the MSUB partner universities in China, Japan, or South Korea. Students are required to spend one full year (two consecutive semesters) abroad. 

If you are interested in studying abroad at one of the three MSUB partner universities, please stop by the Office of Intercultural Programs (ORB 111) or email Amanda Enriquez at amanda.enriquez@nwc.edu

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