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Notable Happenings from The Office of the President


 Georgetown University - Small Gold Seal  

APRIL 28, 2011 – IN THE MIDST OF FEDERAL BUDGET NEGOTIATIONS, Georgetown recently supported the importance of federal funding for programs originating in the Office of Postsecondary Education's International Education and Foreign Language account.

Dr. DeGioia voiced this support in a letter to Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, stating, "As the nation faces challenges, particularly in regions unfamiliar to most Americans, it is critically important that we maintain the ability of National Resource Centers across the nation to pursue timely research, train students in critical foreign languages and area studies, and provide outreach to elementary and secondary schools that opens the minds of our young people to the rest of the world."

Georgetown is home to two long-standing National Resource Centers funded under the International Education and Foreign Language account, including one on the Middle East and one on Eurasian, Russian and Eastern European Studies, as well as a recent center on East Asian Studies.

To read the full letter, visit this link.


The Global Summit of University Presidents, Tsinghua University  University leaders participate in the opening session of the Global Summit of University Presidents in Beijing, China

APRIL 23, 2011 –DR. DEGIOIA JOINED THE PRESIDENTS of the world's leading colleges and universities in Beijing, China this weekend to participate in the Global Summit of University Presidents, hosted by Tsinghua University.  The event also marked the 100th year anniversary of Tsinghua, one of China's leading institutions of higher education.

During the Summit, Dr. DeGioia participated in a panel discussion on "Trends in International Collaboration" and had the opportunity to plant a ceremonial Georgetown tree, in honor of Georgetown's participation in the Centenary festivities.

To learn more about the Summit, visit this link.


Gordon Brown Speaks in Gaston Hall  Former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown delivers an address on "Global Values and Global Institutions" in Gaston Hall

APRIL 14, 2011 – FORMER BRITISH PRIME MINISTER Gordon Brown called for new global institutions to supplement those created during World War II in a speech delivered yesterday on campus.

“We are in a new situation in the year 2011,” Mr. Brown said. “We now have problems that we can call global problems that are in need of global solutions.” Brown said global institutions such as the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank are no longer equipped to deal with the changing global landscape.

In his welcome to a very full Gaston Hall, Dr. DeGioia spoke to Mr. Brown's role in focusing international attention on the importance of global cooperation and human development.  He remarked, "Throughout his time in government, Mr. Brown has underscored the importance of addressing, in our ever more interconnected world, a common global interest in the promotion of freedom and prosperity in every nation. This is an interest shared by individuals, governments, and global institutions."

Read the full article on Mr. Brown's lecture here.


Trevor Manuel delivers the Tambo lecture  Minister Trevor Manuel addresses "Society, Markets and Justice."

APRIL 12, 2011–MINISTER TREVOR A. MANUEL, MP ADDRESSED MEMBERS OF THE GEORGETOWN UNIVERSITYcommunity during the 2011 Oliver Tambo Lecture, held in Riggs Library last night. Mr. Manuel is the Minister of National Planning of the Republic of South Africa.

The Oliver Tambo Lecture is named after the former president of the African National Congress, who was a central figure in the anti-apartheid movement, and established to represent Georgetown University's commitment to working for positive change in South Africa. The Lecture has brought over 250 leading Africa experts to Georgetown including President Thabo Mbeki of South Africa, who offered the inaugural Oliver Tambo Lecture in 2000, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and UN Secretary General, Kofi Annan.

In his lecture Mr. Manuel spoke of the characteristics of a good society, “There must be economic opportunity for all. And in preparation for life, the young must have the physical care, the discipline, let no one doubt, and especially the education that will allow them to seize and exploit that opportunity.”

In his introduction of Mr. Manuel, Dr. DeGioia spoke of his leadership characteristics, “including service, respect for our neighbors, the willingness to put others before ourselves, and the ability to engage in dialogue even with those who do not share our perspective.” He added, “This an important part of our work here on the Hilltop, and an ongoing responsibility we have to one another as citizens of an increasingly interconnected global society.”


Valerie Jarrett delivers the Bernstein lecture  Valerie Jarrett addresses a full Fisher Colloquium during her lecture, "Winning the Future"

APRIL 7, 2011–FORMER GEORGETOWN PROFESSOR AND CURRENT MEMBER OF THE LAW CENTER BOARD OF VISITORS, JUDGE ROBERT KATZMANN of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, joined Dr. DeGioia in welcoming Valerie Jarrett to deliver the annual Bernstein Symposium address, held last night in Fisher Colloquium. Ms. Jarrett is a Senior Advisor to President Barack Obama and the Chair of the White House Council on Women and Girls.

The Bernstein Symposium, hosted by the Department of Government, aims to provide a forum for dialogue with scholars, policymakers, and students about the challenges and opportunities facing our public institutions. The Symposium was created in memory of Dr. Marver and Sheva Bernstein; Dr. Bernstein was a professor of politics and philosophy at Georgetown prior to his death. Judge Katzmann, having been mentored by Dr. Bernstein, played an essential role in establishing the Bernstein Symposium. Previous Bernstein lecturers have included Vice President Al Gore, Senators Daniel Patrick Moynihan and Patrick Leahy, Ambassador Dennis Ross, and Meet The Press moderator, Tim Russert

Ms. Jarrett's remarks focused on the character traits of a great leader and the importance of developing the fundamental traits of leadership early on in life.  She also directly addressed Georgetown students, saying, "To the students in the audience, we need your leadership now more than ever."

In his opening remarks, Dr. DeGioia spoke more broadly to the importance of discourse about our public institutions, asking the audience to consider, “how public institutions can and should respond to changes in this time of economic uncertainty, and shifting social and political trends affecting American domestic and foreign policy."

The Symposium was followed by a dinner in Ms. Jarrett's honor.


Students fold paper cranes to support Japan relief efforts  

APRIL 5, 2011–SINCE THE DEVASTATING EARTHQUAKE AND TSUNAMI IN JAPAN LAST MONTH, the Georgetown community has mobilized to provide support of relief efforts in multiple ways.  Most recently, students have spearheaded the #1KCranes Project, sponsored by the Japan Disaster Relief Committee, the Rotoract student organization and HoyaInnovation.  The goal of the project is to rally the Georgetown community to fold 1,000 cranes for Japan relief. 

The initiative is in response to Amazon CEO, Jeff Bezos', commitment to donating $2 to Japan relief for every paper crane folded, and is based on a Japanese legend that purports that folding 1,000 paper origami cranes can make a person’s wish come true.  A “Senbazuru”, which refers to a thousand origami cranes held together by string, has become a symbol for peace and hope.  Georgetown will send all cranes to Japan with individual messages of support at the end of the Project

Georgetown's #1KCrance effort also has been supported by alumni, who already have donated hundreds of cranes towards Georgetown’s efforts.  Faculty, staff, and university leaders also have contributed.

"As an academic community we are continuing to develop ways to better understand what is taking place in Japan, to provide support and resources for members of our community, and to keep the victims of this tragedy in our prayers,” Dr. DeGioia said.  "The #1KCrane effort and the many other efforts being undertaken by students, faculty, staff and alumni help us to understand more fully what it means to be women and men for others."

To learn more about Georgetown's relief efforts, visit the site at the Center for Social Justice here.

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