For 70 years, CIEE has been committed to the ideal of "expanding international educational opportunities for underrepresented groups of all nations" through a series of initiatives that overcome the three main barriers to study abroad and international exchange: cost, curriculum, and culture. Our success depends on having the very best professionals with a diverse collection of perspectives and professional experiences.
In this tradition, CIEE is happy to announce the appointment of Keshia Abraham, Ph.D. as director of strategic initiatives for study abroad. Dr. Abraham is currently dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, chair of the Humanities Department, director of international education, and associate professor of English at Florida Memorial University. She will begin at CIEE at the end of the spring term and be responsible for implementing strategic initiatives related to supporting university presidents and other senior university leaders to build institutional capacity and expand international programs. In addition, she will lead CIEE programs related to faculty development and advance many initiatives related to expanding access to study abroad for students from all socio-economic backgrounds.
Dr. Abraham will be responsible for implementing and managing CIEE’s partnership with the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education’s Center for Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), known as Project Passport, which includes development programs for college presidents and faculty, as well as various scholarship programs for students, including the Frederick Douglass Global Fellows program.
In addition, Dr. Abraham will lead CIEE initiatives related to faculty development, with a special focus on expanding our well-respected International Faculty Development Seminars division.
Keshia Abraham, Ph.D.
CIEE Director of Strategic Initiatives for Study Abroad
In her most recent concurrent positions as dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, chair of the Humanities Department, director of international education, and associate professor of English at Florida Memorial University, Dr. Keshia Abraham has been focused on keeping global citizenship and international education at the core of her work. Being actively engaged with her students, she has found great joy in being a conduit for positive change at this historically black college and university (HBCU) and in her previous positions at Florida International University and the Miami Workers Center, which have allowed her to engage with numerous MSI-focused initiatives. She is excited that her new position with CIEE will allow her to continue to support MSIs and their students.
Dr. Abraham earned a Ph.D. in comparative literature from Binghamton University with concentrations in African diaspora women’s literatures, cross-cultural feminisms, autobiography, and popular education. The third generation in her family to attend an HBCU, she holds a bachelor’s degree in English with a concentration in women’s studies from Spelman College. She has also studied at the University of Zimbabwe, conducted research as a visiting lecturer at the University of Durban, Westville, and held a position as the first scholar-in-residence at the Feminist Studies Center in Harare. She has taught a wide array of classes including those on postcolonial, African, Caribbean, African-American, and world literature; women’s literature; autobiography; and contemporary drama, among others. A producer of staged performances, facilitator and teacher of yoga and Ayurveda workshops, and creative consultant, her work often intersects cultural and literary studies. She is passionate about international education and global citizenship and as such, she remains deeply committed to enhancing global African diaspora studies and educational exchange.
Among her numerous accomplishments, Dr. Abraham is a two-time Fulbright Scholar, having conducted research in Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, and as a participant in the Fulbright-Nehru International Education Administrators program in India. She has been a Fellow with the Mellon Foundation Community Initiative, Mellon Global Citizenship Program and active with the Salzburg Global Seminar. She has also been an Institute for International Public Policy Faculty Fellow, an active NAFSA member and NAFSA Academy Fellow, and a CIEE-Ping Fellow. Her scholarly work appears in journals such as "Alternation," "SAFERE," and "Bomb"; in books including "MOCA: Re/Claiming Art, Power, Ideas, and Vision in an Ethnically Plural Community"; "Decolonizing the Academy"; "Reflections on Gender in Africa"; and the "Encyclopedia of the African Diaspora," of which she is also a local editor. Dr. Abraham is a contributor to the "Routledge Encyclopedia of Women’s Studies" and editor of the book, "The Caribbean Woman Writer as Scholar: Imagining, Creating, Theorizing," published in 2009 by Caribbean Studies Press.
Dr. Abraham has lived, worked, and travelled internationally for many years in Southern Africa (Zimbabwe, South Africa, Mozambique, Swaziland, Zambia); North Africa (Egypt and Morocco); Europe (England, France, Spain, Turkey, Holland, Sweden, Denmark); India; the Caribbean (Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, Grenada, Belize, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas); and South America (Brazil) and she continues to broaden her scope and sense of the world.
Her current projects live at the intersection of international education, arts advocacy, and healing arts. To keep balanced, she is also a certified Ayurvedic yoga specialist and avid beach walker.