What is Asia? An Orientation to Asian Studies at Penn State


Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship Program

The Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship (HESE) Program brings together passionate students and faculty from various disciplines across campus to develop innovative and practical technology-based solutions to address compelling global development challenges. For Spring 2014, engagement is via a three-credit effort open to upper-division and graduate students from ALL majors. Lower division students might be able to participate with instructor approval.

Here's a two minute video capturing the essence of HESE...and here's a 21-minute TV program.

Students need to sign up for two Engineering Design courses:
- EDSGN 452 (2 credits: Projects in Humanitarian Engineering)
- EDSGN 453 (1 credit: Design for Developing Communities)

Pre-requisite: Fifth semester standing.
(Lower division students with significant community engagement or international travel experience are encouraged to contact the program)
The EDSGN 452 class has three sections: 
  1. Section 1: Essential Design (Kenya, Rwanda, Cameroon): Ventures include Low-cost GreenhousesSolar Food Dryers, Drip Irrigation Systems and Food Carts - All related to strengthening Food Value Chains  (All Majors Welcome)
  2. Section 2: Mashavu Telemedicine System (Kenya): Work continues on various aspects of scaling up the Mashavu pre-primary healthcare system, in collaboration with the CYEC, Kenyan Ministry of Health and telecom giant Safaricom. (All Majors Welcome)
  3. Section 3: Mashavu Biomedical Devices (Kenya): Design and prototyping of low-cost biomedical devices like inkjet-printed test strips for detecting UTIs, Methanol sensors for the local moonshine, food nutrient quantification devices, etc. (Engineering, Agriculture, Sciences, Life Sciences preferred)
This is a rigorous and intense integrated learning, research and entrepreneurial engagement experience that requires strong commitment. Multidisciplinary student teams  will work on various aspects of research, design, testing and implementation of these ventures in the Spring 2014 semester with (proposed) travel to Kenya/Cameroon for three weeks in May. Travel is optional and contingent on successful completion of spring classes, necessary approvals and participation in a half-credit course (EDSGN 454) in the Maymester. Approximate travel dates are May 9 - 29. 

These courses, in concert with classes in Social Entrepreneurship and HESE Reflection and Research Dissemination, count towards the 12.5-credit Certificate in Engineering and Community Engagement, and form the Social Entrepreneurship cluster in the Intercollegiate Minor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation. These courses count as some form of elective for most departments.

Applications for Alumni Mentor Program Now Open

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Are you a junior or senior looking to get more out of your Penn State experience? Need advice on how to jump start your career after graduation? Check out the College of the Liberal Arts Mentor Program. The Mentor Program matches students with alumni mentors in their related career fields for an enriching and enlightening professional experience. Mentees can look for opportunities to grow and develop by asking for feedback, discussing goals and challenges, and learning new skills and abilities.


Each mentorship is unique. Good mentees invest time and energy into getting to know their mentors and fostering a strong relationship. The role of the mentee is to learn and explore new options for personal development. The Mentor Program is a commitment that requires dedication and effort. After being matched with a mentor, the alumni relations office arranges the initial mentor/mentee meeting. Your mentee Handbook will guide you through the next steps to draft and action plan and schedule the next steps together.


The online application for Spring 2014 is now available. Apply by December 1st to receive priority consideration. To learn more about the program and to complete the application, please visit the Career Enrichment Network website. Please contact Heather Baruch-Bueter at hzb100@psu.edu with any questions

Tel Akko Total Archaeological Field School


If you are interested in archaeology and archaeological digs, this month long program to Israel is a perfect fit. This 6-credit archaeological field school at Tel Akko, with an optional 3-credit independent study option, integrates the multifaceted aspects of twenty-first-century archaeology that combines excavation, survey, geographic information systems (GIS), conservation, heritage studies, public archaeology, and archaeological sciences.

There will be an information session for interested students Tuesday, November 5 at 5:45pm in 205 Ferguson.

Liberal Arts anthropology major Stephanie Malpica participated in this program last summer; she gained valuable knowledge throughout the dig that she will utilize in her future career as a cultural anthropologist in the Middle East.


                 "This opportunity was packed to the brim with activities, excellent                                           professors, mentors, and students." - Stephanie Malpica

The application deadline for Summer 2014 is February 1, 2014.

For more information, visit the Tel Akko study abroad webpage.

Undergraduate history conference wants you to submit your history report

Did you write an interesting history-related research paper for class? Are you working on research or your thesis? Have you completed an interesting internship or independent study?

We want you to show off your work!

The History Roundtable will be hosting the Fall Undergraduate History Research Conference on Saturday, December 7th, from 11:00 AM - 3:00 PM in 102 Weaver Building. Presentations are roughly 15 minutes, can choose to include a visual aid, and students will receive constructive feedback from our panel of professional historians. Participation in this conference not only looks great on your resume, but also includes a catered lunch. Family and friends are welcome to attend! 

If you are interested in presenting, contact Chloe Weaver at cqw104@psu.edu by December 1 with the title of your project and a very brief abstract. We hope to see you there, either in the audience or at the podium! 

Democracy Institute Graduate Research Grants

In an effort to support and highlight the innovative work of graduate students in the College of the Liberal Arts, the Democracy Institute is offering five Graduate Research Grants to advance the theory and practice of democracy. This $1,000 grant is intended to encourage original research that builds on existing theoretical, humanistic, and empirical understandings of democracy, broadly construed. The Institute welcomes any research pertinent to innovations or obstacles in democratic norms, cultural practices, and/or political institutions. Democracy Institute Graduate Research Grant winners are required to present their research, in the form of a working paper, at a conference held on campus in the Spring.

View the Call for Applications.

Fellowship and Scholarship Announcements


Penn State's University Fellowships Office is a great resource for students seeking post-graduate opportunities and funding to support their undergraduate global experiences. 

If you are interested in any of the following opportunities, please contact the Fellowships Office to schedule an appointment with Dr. Ruth Mendum; Dr. Mendum reviews students' application statements and other materials and can answer any questions you may have about these and other opportunities for which you may be eligible.

Critical Language Scholarships (CLS)

The Critical Language Scholarship offers intensive summer language institutes in thirteen critical foreign languages as part of a U.S. government effort to dramatically expand the number of Americans studying and mastering critical foreign languages. Students of diverse disciplines and majors are encouraged to apply. Participants are expected to continue their language study beyond the scholarship period, and later apply their critical language skills in their future professional careers. Languages include:

·         Azerbaijani, Bangla/Bengali, Hindi, Indonesian, Korean, Punjabi, Turkish, and Urdu: Beginning, advanced beginning, intermediate and advanced levels

·         Arabic and Persian: Advanced beginning, intermediate and advanced levels

·         Chinese, Japanese, and Russian: Intermediate and advanced levels.

The University Fellowships Office is offering a CLS workshop on the 29th of October (Tuesday), from 12:00 - 1:00pm in 321 HUB.  Attend and find out all you need to know before starting your Critical Languages Scholarship Application.  Please RSVP to University Fellowships Office assistant: jmw62@psu.edu.

The application deadline is November 15th, 2013.


The Rangel International Affairs Scholarship

The Rangel Graduate Fellowship Program offers students interested in careers of international service who want to become Foreign Service Officers in the U.S. Department of State, benefits of up to $90,000 over two years toward a two-year master's degree. Upon completion of the two-year fellowship, Fellows join the Foreign Service of the U.S. Department of State. Applicants must be college seniors or graduates looking to start the two-year program in fall 2014, must have GPAs of at least 3.2, and must be U.S. citizens. This program is open to all majors. 

The application deadline is January 17, 2014.

Boren Awards for International Study - Undergraduate Scholarship

Boren Scholarships, funded by the National Security Education Program (NSEP), provide American undergraduate students with the resources and encouragement they need to acquire skills and experiences in areas of the world critical to the future security of our nation.  You could receive $10,000 for a semester and $20,000 for a full academic year.  More information regarding eligibility requirements and application instructions should visit their website.

Fellowships Office Application Deadline: January 28, 2014

The application deadline for 2014-15 is  February 5, 2014.

Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowships

The Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship is looking for highly motivated and academically excellent college juniors, graduating seniors, and college graduates who want to pursue a Foreign Service career in the U.S. Department of State. The programs provide funding for academic expenses, as well as summer internships, professional development, and ongoing mentoring.

The application deadline is January 24, 2014


Donald M. Payne International Development Program

The Payne International Development Program is designed to attract outstanding young people to careers in international development as USAID Foreign Service Officers. The Program provides benefits valued at up to $90,000 over two years toward a two-year master's degree. Fellows who successfully complete the program become USAID Foreign Service Officers. Applicants must be college seniors or graduates looking to start graduate school in fall 2014, have a GPA of at least 3.2, and must be U.S. citizens. The program is open to all majors. 

The application deadline is January 27, 2014.

Fulbright U.S. Student Program

The Fulbright U.S. Student Program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, is now the largest U.S. exchange program offering opportunities for students and young professionals to undertake international graduate study, advanced research, university teaching, and teaching in elementary and secondary schools worldwide. The U.S. Student Program currently awards approximately 1,800 grants annually to engage in all fields of study, research, or teaching assistantships, and operates in more than 155 countries worldwide. 

 The application deadline for 2014 has passed, but students interested in applying for Fulbright awards in future years may enjoy reading current Penn State Fulbrighters' blog posts available on the University Fellowships site.

@PSULAvoices to host Twitter contest tonight

@PSULAvoices will host a Twitter contest starting at 8:00 p.m. on Thursday October 24 during WPSU's airing of "A Conversation with Eyal Press." We are requesting thoughtful questions, responses, and insights about the show using the hashtag #PennStateReads.

The author of the tweet with the most retweets will receive a $30 gift card from Rita's Italian Ice. The contest will run through November 1 at midnight, allowing for online viewing of the show on the Conversations from Penn State Website.

Press's book "Beautiful Souls," explores what impels ordinary people to defy the sway of authority and convention. The book was selected in 2013, by the Penn State Reads series to be read and discussed by incoming freshmen.

While watching the show viewers are encouraged to consider the question: How should society deal with whistle blowers, "Inconvenient truth-tellers," and those who act out of moral conscience?

If you are new to live-tweeting you can read Associate Dean Chris Long's blog post about constructive participation in live-tweeted events. 

The contest is open to public participation and the winner will be contacted via Twitter direct message to claim the gift card.

Elephants in the Classroom


Lean In Campus Livestream Event with Sheryl Sandberg

Sheryl Sandberg, COO at Facebook and author of Lean In, encourages women to lean into their careers to achieve professional goals and become strong leaders. Also the creator of The Lean In Organization, Sandberg is now looking to connect with college students through the Lean In Campus Initiative. Through this initiative students will form small "Lean In Circles." Circles are small peer groups that meet regularly to learn and share together. Studies show that people are more creative, more confident and accomplish more in groups. These groups will encourage women to reach higher, achieve goals, and become stronger leaders.

This initiative will begin with a Livestream on Monday, October 28 from 7-8 pm in the Cybertorium (Room 113) in the IST building. It is advised that attendees arrive 15 minutes early to the event. The event is sponsored by the Women in Information Science and Technology. All students from all majors are welcome to attend. There will be snacks provided.
For more information, please visit http://leanin.org/campus and RSVP to the event on Facebook! 


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