| by Jason Warburg

Recent news and announcements from members of the MIIS community around the world.


>>Wesley Laine MAIPS ’14, currently a law student at Sciences Po in Paris, spent the summer as a legal fellow at the Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti, based in Boston. After returning from a fact-finding mission on the Haiti-Dominican Republic border, Laine made the local news in Boston while working to draw attention to the plight of some 200,000 Dominican Republic residents of Haitian descent who have been stripped of their citizenship. Those remaining in the country are “having to leave their homes, seeing their homes being burned down, being harassed by soldiers, policemen, even their neighbors,” according to Laine.

>>The second annual retreat organized by the Vienna Center for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation (VCDNP), operated by the Institute’s James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS), welcomed over three dozen senior diplomats and nongovernmental experts. The June 14–15 retreat in Baden, Austria, focused on analyzing the outcome of the 2015 Review Conference of the Treaty on the Non- Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons (NPT), and featured guests including International Atomic Energy Agency Director General Yukiya Amano and Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization Executive Secretary Lassina Zerbo. The workshop was the first major event hosted by new VCDNP Executive Director Laura Rockwood. Her predecessor, Elena Sokova MPA ’00, now deputy director of CNS in Monterey, also participated.

>>Over the summer, Cristyn Elder MATESOL ’00 shared a fun moment from an overseas assignment that found her in Panama for 11 weeks working on revising the curriculum for Panamá Bilingüe, one of Presidente Juan Carlos Varela’s initiatives. After introducing herself to President Varela during his visit to the school where she was working, she asked permission to take a selfie with him, and he gladly obliged. n The summer edition of Study in the USA magazine featured a profile of Esra Bozkurt ESL ’15, a student in our English as a Second Language program. Ezra is from Turkey and is preparing to pursue her PhD in the U.S. this fall.



>>In June, Anthony Iacono BAIS ’14 traveled with Dr. Philip Murphy and classmates Jeffrey Zeitz MAIPS ’15 and Will Heilbut MBA/MANPTS ’15 to a conference hosted by the International Network for Social Network Analysis in Brighton, United Kingdom. Zeitz, Iacono, and Murphy presented twice at the conference, in one case basing their presentation on a research project that the two students had worked on for one of Prof. Murphy’s courses. Omar Salem MAIPS ’13 was the coauthor of a third paper presented by Professor Murphy at the conference.

>>Current nonproliferation and terrorism studies student Farah Al-Mousawi MANPTS ’16 was selected to present her research on extremism in Iran and the Islamic State at the September 25–26 ISA-West (International Studies Association) conference. In addition, Al-Mousawi chaired a session on innovations in teaching and learning that featured Gigi Gokcek MAIPS ’97 on the discussion panel. Gokcek teaches at Dominican University and was Al- Mousawi’s advisor during her undergraduate studies there.



>>The United Nations announced prestigious new appointments for two alumnae over the summer. Michelle Keating MATI ’93, the new chief of the languages service at the UN’s division of conference management, has worked in language services in international organizations for 17 years, most recently at the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization. Deirdre A. Durrance MACI ’86, the new chief of the UN’s contractual translation unit in New York, has worked on four continents as a conference interpreter for numerous international organizations, and on diplomatic assignments for over 20 years.

>>While following up on the above item, we learned that Dawnielle Jacobson MAT ’14 Middlebury MA French ’06 and Aaron Hebenstreit MAT ’14, both of whom previously interned at the UN, recently passed the organization’s freelance test and have been offered contracts to support this fall’s meeting of the UN General Assembly.

>>On June 16 the campus community gathered at the Samson Student Center for a celebration marking the Institute’s 60th anniversary. The Monterey Institute of Foreign Studies was founded on June 9, 1955, by language instructor Gaspard Weiss, who envisioned a graduate school that would promote international understanding through the study of language and culture. Vice President and Dean of the Institute Jeff Dayton-Johnson encouraged the faculty and staff who attended “to renew our commitment and enthusiasm for the principles of this remarkable institution.”

>>Professor Philip Murphy was named the recipient of the 2015 Leslie Eliason Excellence in Teaching Award in an announcement that praised his “innovative, generous and collaborative approach to teaching.” Murphy’s specialty is network analysis, and during the 2015 January term he led a policy analysis class to Peru to carry out a field research project they had designed. An assistant professor in the International Policy and Development program, he is also a cofounder of the META Lab.

>>Congratulations to Carmen Paraison MAIPS ’14, who was awarded a Fulbright-Clinton Fellowship, which places fellows as advisers in foreign government ministries. Carmen will be working in the Ministry of Finance in Cote d’Ivoire. Congratulations also to Nate Maynard MAIEP ’14, who will be staying another year on a Fulbright Scholarship in Taiwan.

>>Patricia Szasz MATESOL ’06, director of the Institute’s Intensive English Programs, was recently named president-elect of EnglishUSA: the American Association of Intensive English Programs. She has also served on the board of California Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (CATESOL).

>>Last issue’s piece about two members of the Institute community who were honored at the California Healthcare Interpreters Association (CHIA) meeting inadvertently omitted a third. The “Friends of CHIA Award” went to the UCSF Interpreting Services Department, whose members include Mateo Rutherford MATI ’03. Congratulations to Mateo, who has worked as the supervisor, administrative director, and project manager in the department and is currently managing the UCSF remote interpreting initiative. He also freelances as a conference interpreter specializing in life sciences and information technology.

>>Molly McKeon MAIEP ‘16 marveled at the opportunity she had in June to speak one on one with government leaders at an international aid conference in Japan. “There I was, talking trade-offs between sustainability and development in French over lunch with legislators from Togo.” Molly was invited to participate in the conference as part of the Center for Strategic and International Studies’ Pacific Forum Young Leader Program, which brought 30 young leaders from around the world to discuss issues related to aid and development with politicians, experts, and young parliamentarians.

As someone who was skeptical of this administration’s ability to negotiate a good deal, I have
to say—they negotiated a pretty good deal.
— Dr. Jeffrey Lewis, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, at an August 31 public forum on the proposed nuclear agreement with Iran.


>>In collaboration with the Mexican Foreign Ministry, CNS conducted its second annual summer school on nuclear disarmament and nonproliferation in Mexico City July 13–17. Participants included young diplomats from 25 Latin American countries, along with university students and representatives from international organizations. CNS Director William Potter and Gaukhar Mukhatzhanova MAIPS ’07 served as lead instructors at the school, which also featured U.S. Special Representative for Nonproliferation Ambassador Adam Scheinman and other senior officials, as well as CNS staff members Melissa Hanham, Miles Pomper, Laura Rockwood, and Dr. Nikolai Sokov.

>>On July 22, founder/ editor Kate Daniels Kurz announced that the Women’s International Perspective (The WIP, a web-based platform for journalism written by women), has ceased publication of new material. Active since 2007 at thewip.net, The WIP has published work by many Institute students, faculty, and alumni and in 2014 became a publication of the Middlebury Institute. The site’s eight years of published material will live on in what Daniels calls “The WIP 3.0,” a searchable archive of resources that promises to “preserve this piece of history in the most effective and valuable way for readers and researchers worldwide who value women’s voices and perspectives.” Daniels and a group of MIIS graduate assistants are currently working to make this transition a reality.

>>International Environmental Policy Program Chair and Center for the Blue Economy (CBE) Director Jason Scorse took a month-long trip to Asia this summer that included lecturing on “the Blue Economy 2.0” and meeting with staff and researchers at the Chinese National Marine Data Center and the Korean Maritime Institute to discuss increased collaboration. Scorse said the trip “exceeded my expectations,” as both groups expressed interest in collaborating with the CBE on future international symposia, the CBE’s Journal for Ocean and Coastal Economics, and new research initiatives.

>>Dave Schmerler MANPTS ’15 collaborated with Dr. Jeffrey Lewis and Melissa Hanham of CNS on a fascinating analysis of a May missile test staged by North Korea, presenting visual evidence from publicly available sources supporting their conclusion that the test, purportedly from a submarine, had actually been launched from a submersible barge.

>>A three-way collaboration among Middlebury community members in Monterey, Washington, D.C., and Vermont resulted in a successful “Careers In Environment” panel at the Middlebury In D.C. office this July. The panel featured Christine Chau MAIEP/ MBA ’09 and Nick Rome MAIEP ’08 and was enjoyed by audiences participating by video conference from Monterey, the School of the Environment in Middlebury, and Washington, D.C.



>>Monterey County’s thriving agricultural industry contributes $8.1 billion to the region’s economy, according to a new report coauthored by Middlebury Institute professors Fernando DePaolis and Jeff Langholz. Commissioned by the county’s agricultural commissioner, the new report found that the agriculture industry and related supporting industries provide the equivalent of 76,000 full-time jobs to the region, representing more than one in four jobs in the county. Release of the report received wide coverage in the local media.

>>The April-June edition of Peace Review, a peer-reviewed journal focusing on the nexus of gender, conflict, and natural resources, featured articles by two alumni. Adrienne Stork MAIEP ’09 wrote about Ivory Coast and Sudan, while Brittany Ajroud MAIEP ’14 focused on Liberia and Timor-Leste.

>>The Washington Examiner published an opinion piece authored by International Trade and Economic Diplomacy Program Chair Robert Rogowsky titled “Trade politics and the decline of American leadership” on June 17. In the piece, Professor Rogowsky suggests that advances in technology have cost more American manufacturing jobs than freer trade has.

>>Professor Philipp Bleek had two opinion pieces published in The National Interest over the summer: “Kazakhstan’s Nuclear Fuel Bank: A New Nonproliferation Tool” on June 23 and “Iran Deal Buys Time: Now America’s Real Work Begins” on July 18.

>>In the course of reviewing web analytics, staff members were touched to note that a May 2011 blog post by the late Dr. Peter Grothe titled “A Message to Graduating Students” was viewed more than 100 times over the summer. The memory of longtime staff member and adjunct professor Dr. Grothe lives on.

For More Information

Eva Gudbergsdottir