Students Explore Various Cultures through SC State’s OINSEP

Monday, June 06, 2011

SC State University’s Office of International and National Student Exchange Programs (OINSEP) is a unit of the Honors College in the Division of Academic Affairs. Established in January 2011, OINSEP’s mission is to strengthen the academic and cultural environment of the University using initiatives that support the internationalization of the campus community.


OINSEP has several goals that will ensure long-term success, which includes promoting multi-cultural awareness, international understanding, cross-cultural training and world affairs education at SC State; promoting the integration of international understanding and global awareness in the curriculum; serving as the catalyst for negotiating, implementing and maintaining international linkages with institutions of higher education in other countries; supporting study abroad programs, international student and scholar exchange programs and the National Student Exchange program;  supporting other programs, events and activities that strengthen the international dimensions of the University; providing services that assist with the recruitment and retention of international students and establishing a financially sustainable Center of International Education.


“This office is poised to play a major role in effecting the University’s mission of preparing students to work and live productively in a dynamic and global society,” according to OINSEP’s interim director, Dr. Learie B. Luke.  “Students I talk to are very excited about opportunities that can broaden their horizons by engaging in study abroad and cultural immersion programs,” Luke adds.


Since January 2011, OINSEP has focused on developing study abroad programs, identifying funding for students who wish to study overseas and promoting the Fulbright program, which allows faculty members to teach and research abroad, in addition to the National Student Exchange Program, which allows both incoming and outgoing students to study for a semester or a year at a host university. OINSEP also hosts cultural programs such as the International Siestas which seek to bring domestic and international students and faculty together. Attendees of the International Siestas, which are by invitation only through OINSEP, will experience an array of fashion, festivals, cultural items and native cuisines.  The countries that have already been showcased include Taiwan, China, Nigeria and Trinidad and Tobago. 


OINSEP has also established an Advisory Committee made up of faculty, staff and students, as well as a Strategic Planning Committee to guide its initiatives through 2015-2016 when it hopes to establish a Center of International Education. Future initiatives of OINSEP include internationalizing the curricula at SC State, commemorating International Women’s Day, celebrating International Awareness Month during November, establishing an Ambassador Speaker Series, hosting a website for OINSEP, developing a dossier of international experts on campus and implementing a “Weekend in Washington” program, designed to allow students to visit and explore the nation’s capitol.  Finally, OINSEP will establish a partnership with the United States Peace Corps.


For more information on the services of OINSEP, visit the office in the Dean’s Suite on the first floor of Belcher Hall, rooms 120 and 145, located on the SC State campus. You may also contact Dr. Learie Luke at (803) 533-3615, or via email at lluke@scsu.edu.