CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange today announced Portland Public Schools' Deering High School is one of just 50 high schools nationwide to receive Global Navigator Scholarships for 2015. Select schools that demonstrate their dedication to expanding global education will receive $20,000 each in scholarships to enable more of their students to study abroad this summer as part of CIEE’s Global Navigator Scholarship program.
Also today, CIEE named Deering High School as its 2015 international partner to advance global education for girls, and will provide four additional summer abroad scholarships in recognition of the school’s commitment to the internationally acclaimed Girl Rising social movement.
Deering is widely recognized as one of the most progressive schools in Maine in promoting an integrated global education experience for all students. It is also the most diverse high school north of Boston, with students from 54 different countries who speak 27 languages. Deering is one of just 34 U.S. high schools to join the Asia Society’s International Studies School Network and is believed to be the first Maine public school to offer Arabic language.
“We see ourselves as global citizens. We are working hard to prepare our students to be college and career ready, and also to be globally competent,” said Deering High School Principal Ira Waltz. “Study abroad is an important part of our curriculum. Our students come home from their experiences abroad changed for the better and eager to share what they’ve learned with our school community. These scholarships are especially meaningful to enable more members of our diverse community to have a study abroad experience.”
Carlos Gómez, a Spanish teacher and faculty leader for the global focus at the school, adds, “These authentic learning opportunities will help our students develop their language and global competence skills.”
CIEE offers 30 summer abroad programs for high school students in 16 destinations around the world. All programs combine cultural immersion and academics in language and culture, service and leadership, and content studies. The language and culture programs address seven different languages: Spanish, French, Mandarin Chinese, German, Italian, Japanese, and Arabic.
The new Global Navigator Scholarship program recognizes a high school’s commitment to delivering an exemplary, integrated global education, with a special emphasis on second language acquisition and embracing intercultural skills and competencies. Individual student awards will be made on a combination of financial need, merit, and passion for the program themes – language, science, arts, service, leadership, and cultural exchange. Specific programs include learning about children’s rights and education, public health, and marine and environmental science at diverse CIEE locations in China, the Dominican Republic, Bonaire, and Botswana. The Global Navigator Scholarships are endowed by donor Sheron Long, former CEO of Hampton-Brown, a pre-K-12 education publisher of language and literacy materials, in partnership with CIEE.
The four additional Girl Rising scholarships will be granted to female students devoted to promoting girls’ and woman’s leadership themes. This effort is the latest in a three-year relationship between CIEE and Deering to prepare Maine’s young women to be globally competent citizens, workers, and leaders. Deering has actively participated in the internationally acclaimed Girl Rising social movement since 2012 by hosting screenings of the award-winning film of the same name, teaching a companion curriculum, and organizing student panels to discuss ways to help grant more girls access to quality education around the globe.
“These scholarships are the latest milestone in a growing relationship between CIEE and Deering High School, as we deepen our partnership to nurture leadership skills and expand educational opportunities for women and girls,” said James P. Pellow, Ed.D., president and chief executive officer of CIEE. “We want these scholarships to further global awareness among the entire student population, and to create lasting change by helping to eliminate the traditional study abroad barriers of cost, curriculum, and culture. Deering High School is ahead of the curve, equipping their students with the knowledge and skills needed for success in an increasingly interconnected world.”
Together, CIEE and Deering High School also support the annual Justice for Women Lecture Series, which is hosted by the University of Maine School Of Law. Deering students and CIEE staff attend private sessions with leading women’s rights activists from around the world, who visit Portland to share their experiences about their causes. This year’s lecture will be presented on March 19 by Indian abolitionist Ruchira Gupta, who is campaigning against sex trafficking of girls and women.