PBD Inductees 24

Students, staff and faculty honored at Global Initiatives Achievement Celebration

Contact: Nicol Tinsley
VCU Global Education Office
Phone: (804) 828-6463

Richmond, VA (April 30, 2024) — The Global Education Office (GEO) recently honored the achievements of Virginia Commonwealth University students, staff and faculty during its annual Global Initiatives Achievement Celebration on April 15, 2024. During the celebration, more than 400 students, faculty and staff members were recognized for program participation, scholarships and awards, honor society induction and graduation.

Jill Blondin, Ph.D., associate vice provost for global initiatives, feels the celebration is an opportunity to recognize VCU students, faculty and staff who have contributed to the university's internationalization in various ways.

"The Global Initiatives Achievement Ceremony provides an opportunity for the VCU community to come together to celebrate the myriad of ways that internationalization is achieved on our campus: through student, faculty, and staff contributions," she said. "It allows us to recognize all of these achievements at once, so that we can appreciate the extraordinary breadth of our work."

The program honored eight different groups of faculty and staff who have engaged globally in a variety of ways that have advanced the university’s mission and expanded its global footprint. Recognition was given to the International Travel Advisory Committee Members; Global Learning Program Development Award Recipients; Global Partnership Impact Awardees; and Harris Manchester College Summer Research Institute recipients.

Blondin’s recent designation as 2023 Senior International Officer of the Year by the Institute of International Education (IIE) was recognized as she was presented with a letter of congratulations from the Office of the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia in honor of her achievement.

Eight groups of students and their achievements were recognized, including the following:

  • GEO’s English Language Program graduates, and award winners
  • VCU’s international student graduates
  • Founders of the Global Intercultural Association
  • Members of GEO’s International Student Support Advisory Board
  • Exchange students from various VCU partner universities abroad
  • Recipients of the Global Engagement & Leadership Certificate
  • Peace Corps Prep certificate recipients
  • Various study abroad scholarship recipients

A new award given this year was the English Language Program’s Student Engagement Award which honors a student who embodies dedication, passion and excellence in their studies. This year the English Language Program faculty selected Mohammad Alharbi as the recipient, commending him for his exemplary commitment to learning.

New members of the Phi Beta Delta Honor Society for International Scholars, the first honor society dedicated to recognizing scholarly achievement in international education, were inducted into the organization.

The celebration ended with student speakers who spoke about their experiences in the various groups they participated in. The group of student speakers for the evening included Neil Hinoguin Sagrado, Farah Ghaith Khansa, Sonika Singhal, Angela Vega Vega, Mariam Alothman Annabelle Starr and Luz Rodriguez.

Artwork and essays of students of the English Language Program were exhibited at the event.