Portland-State-University 2021-2022 Bulletin

Office of International Affairs

Executive Director: Ron L. Witczak
Executive Assistant, Karin Waller

Karl Miller Center, Suite 610

The Office of International Affairs (OIA) provides support for international students, scholars and faculty, as well as PSU students and faculty who are planning to study, intern and teach abroad. OIA also houses Centers and Institutes which focus on specific geographic regions with the goal of promoting cultural understanding and engagement. In addition, our Portland Center and International Special Programs offer individualized programs for international students visiting the U.S.

International Student and Scholar Services

Director: Christina Luther

Associate Director: Jill Townley
Assistant Director: Joshua Davis

Karl Miller Center, Suite 660 


International Student and Scholar Services staff work with admitted international students, visiting scholars, and international faculty. The office is a central source of information on the services and programs available to these groups. The staff work closely with sponsoring agencies, diplomatic missions, and other government agencies to resolve academic, financial, immigration and adjustment issues.

Services and programs offered to international students, scholars and faculty include:

• Intensive orientation programs for all incoming international students and faculty.

• Immigration advising for students, visiting scholars, and exchange students.

• Administration of scholarships specifically for international students.

• Educational and social events for international students and scholars with University and community groups, including a mentoring program which matches new international students with returning     students.

• Weekly or quarterly workshops on issues affecting internationals, such as insurance, work permission, taxes, etc.

• A weekly International Coffee Hour open to all PSU students, staff, and faculty.

• Advising for faculty and staff regarding the invitation and employment of international faculty.

• Advising of international faculty (and their dependents) on regulations and procedures for maintaining legal status, travel, employment authorization, and other issues.

For more information about staff and services, please visit our websites:

www.pdx.edu/international-students and www.pdx.edu/international-scholars.

For information about international student admissions, contact the Office of Admissions at 503-725-3511 or intladm@pdx.edu.

For information about English as a Second Language (ESL), contact the Intensive English Language Program, University Center Building Suite 400, 503-725-4088 or esl@pdx.edu.

Education Abroad

Director: Jen Hamlow
Karl Miller Center, 6th Floor

PSU supports the long-standing value that studying other cultures and places is an essential component of modern education. As a result of our commitment to internationalization, the Office of International Affairs sponsors a wide variety of education abroad programs for PSU students year-round. The University administers some of these programs directly, while others are conducted in cooperation with educational associations such as IE3 Global, the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE), and the University Studies Abroad Consortium (USAC).
Advisors in Education Abroad provide guidance and assistance for students who seek to enrich their university education through education abroad. PSU offers over 200 programs in more than 80 countries. Because these programs offer residence credit and home campus registration, participating students who are eligible for financial aid at PSU may apply it, in most cases, to these study programs.

PSU also has a long-standing tradition of working with faculty to develop a variety of short-term overseas experiences for students. The length of these programs ranges from ten days to six weeks, and they are offered throughout the academic year. PSU faculty members have taken students to countries all over the world, including China, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Ghana, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Nicaragua, Spain, and Vietnam.

Education Abroad opportunities are subject to change throughout the year. For the most current listing of programs available and to learn how to get started, please visit our website at www.pdx.edu/education-abroad/, or come to our offices on the 6th floor of the Karl Miller Center.

International Special Programs

Director: Jeff Baffaro

Karl Miller Center, 630A




International Special Programs (ISP) provides non-credit short-term training and education programs for professional and student groups, custom-designed for specific international organizations/agencies/institutions, which draw on resources and expertise of PSU faculty and the Portland community to provide specialized instruction.

ISP provides administrative, logistical, and curricular support services to provide for a custom-designed group package experience which includes instruction, extra-/co-curricular activities, transportation, housing and meals. ISP hosts 30-35 groups a year. For more information visit our website at www.pdx.edu/intl-special-programs.

International Partnerships

Director: Sally S. Mudiamu
Karl Miller Center, 630D 

The Office of International Partnerships (OIP) is the focal point for all Portland State University international partnerships. PSU is committed to developing robust, multi-faceted partnerships that include transfer & pathway programs, study abroad at PSU, short-term special programs, education abroad for PSU students, collaborative online international learning, alumni involvement, private sector engagements, and scholarly exchange. Linking these opportunities together under the umbrella of a single comprehensive partnership facilitates a rich international experience for PSU students and faculty. OIP manages 293 partnerships in 54 countries and serves as a bridge to connect PSU faculty and staff to international opportunities. OIP also provides robust cultural and institutional expertise to PSU faculty, staff, and international partners seeking to navigate the complex international university landscape.

Portland Center

Director: Sally S. Mudiamu
Karl Miller Center, 630D 


In Fall 2018, the Office of International Affairs launched the Portland Center to run programming and support for visiting, non-degree seeking international students at PSU. The Portland Center collaborates closely with the Intensive English Language Institute to offer language and academic support to students from partner institutions wishing to take regular PSU undergraduate classes as part of their home baccalaureate degree. The program accepts students four times per year on a rolling admissions basis and assist students with housing, registration and student support. The Waseda Transnational Program, which has been running for nearly two decades at PSU, has been folded into the Portland Center.  Sally Mudiamu will serve as Director, and the Portland Center will be housed in the Office of International Partnerships. The Office of International Affairs is excited about offering this opportunity to institutional partners and their students. It will offer PSU an opportunity to more intentionally meet the needs of short-term visiting international students while simultaneously offering an opportunity to advance the internationalization of the PSU undergraduate curriculum by working collaboratively across units and schools to offer programming that showcases Portland.

Institute for Asian Studies

Director: Suwako Watanabe

Karl Miller Center, 6th Floor



The mission of the Institute for Asian Studies (IAS) is to promote understanding of the landscapes, histories, cultures, politics, and peoples of Asia. The IAS leverages the energy and expertise of PSU faculty with deep-rooted and wide-ranging interests in Asia to support research and education about Asia.  IAS serves as the center for Asia-related research, teaching, and outreach in Portland and the wider region through academic and cultural programs.

Founded in 1997, IAS provides programming related to Asia including lecture events of both academic and practical nature and cultural events covering a wide range of regional focuses and issues through networking and  collaborations with the institutional units and community organizations.

Middle East Studies Center

Director: Lindsay Benstead, PhD

Outreach Coordinator: Corinne Hughes


Karl Miller Center, 660R


The mission of the Middle East Studies Center (MESC) is to serve our students, city, and world through the creation of a diverse, inclusive community and the promotion and sharing of scholarship on the Middle East, North Africa, and Southwest Asia. The Center was created in 1959 as one of the first two federally supported undergraduate program for Arabic language and Middle East area studies in the nation. Over the years, the university expanded to offer courses and programs in the four major Middle Eastern languages including Persian, Arabic, Hebrew, and Turkish and programs across different academic disciplines such as International and Global Studies, Political Science, Sociology, History, and Business.

Middle East studies at Portland State boasts a distinguished faculty and vast library resources. The Center serves as a resource on issues pertaining to the Middle East through activities that reach students and scholars, as well as businesses, educators, and the media. In addition, the Center supports academic conferences, workshops, cultural events, and lectures and provides support to area elementary and high school teachers and community college instructors.

The Center's core responsibilities are to coordinate and promote academic and outreach activities across the university and beyond, including conferences, speakers, and training programs for area students, teachers, faculty, and community members. The Center further seeks to guide and train students who plan to make a career in this field. To support these initiatives, MESC closely works with academic and administrative units across campus. As an outgrowth of these core responsibilities, it also conducts outreach activities with local, national, and international educational and community organizations.

Middle East-related degree programs at PSU include:

-Certificate in Middle East Studies

-Certificate in Global Studies

-Major or Minor in Middle East Language with programs in Arabic, Persian, and Hebrew.*

Please take a look at the various activities of our center on our web page and consider becoming a friend of MESC.

PSU does not currently offer Turkish language courses or the Minor in Turkish. Turkish literature courses may be available.

Fulbright, Boren & Critical Language Scholarships

Director: Debra Z. Clemans
Assistant: Karin Waller

Karl Miller Center, Suite 610


Fulbright Program

Portland State participates in the Fulbright Program, first founded in 1946 by Senator J. William Fulbright and expanded in 1961 as the Fulbright-Hays Act. Awards available include those offered by the U.S. government, foreign governments, universities, and private donors, and most are managed by IIE, the Institute of International Education. Grants are available to qualified US undergraduate and graduate students and alumni for teaching or advanced research, to qualified faculty for lecturing and research, and to teachers for overseas teacher programs. Non-US citizens also have opportunities through Fulbright.

Grants for US students to Study, Research, or Teach Abroad - Fulbright opportunities for US students are announced annually on April 1 with submission deadlines in late Summer/early Fall. The annual campus deadline is September 8 for awards in the US student program that begin the following academic year. Information sessions are held in Spring term. The director manages PSU’s campus interview process and assists applicants throughout the application cycle. https://us.fulbrightonline.org/

University Lecturing and/or Advanced Research - The application deadline for many faculty and professional level programs is late summer each year. This program also sends non-US scholars and researchers from overseas universities to the US. Visit https://www.cies.org/ or contact Debra Clemans to learn about how to invite a scholar from overseas to study, teach, or do research in your department at Portland State University.

Doctoral Dissertation Research Abroad - This Fulbright-Hays program provides grants to colleges and universities to fund individual doctoral students who conduct research in other countries, in modern foreign languages and area studies for periods of six to twelve months. Deadlines vary. Visit http://www2.ed.gov/programs/iegpsddrap/index.html and contact Debra Clemans at clemansd@pdx.edu if you decide to apply.

Fulbright for Foreign Students - Fulbright offers awards to students from outside the US through embassies and Fulbright commissions overseas.  To learn more about this program, visit this site: https://foreign.fulbrightonline.org/ Typically the student should be applying while still living in their home country.

David L. Boren Scholarships (NSEP)

Scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students are available through this federally funded program for the purpose of helping more Americans learn the languages and cultures of countries and regions deemed critical to U.S. national security and is managed by IIE, the Institute of International Education. It aims to build a base of future leaders and professionals who can help the United States make sound decisions, deal effectively with global issues, and to enhance and increase the faculty who can educate U.S. citizens toward achievement of these goals. This scholarship includes a service requirement once a student has completed their degree. Applications are due early in winter term each year. Interviews are held on the PSU campus prior to Boren deadlines. Those interested should contact the Boren director listed above for more information on requirements and application details and visit https://borenawards.org/. Information sessions are available during fall term.


Critical Language Scholarship (CLS)

The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) is a program managed by American Councils for International Education that sends current and recent US students (graduate and undergraduate) to other countries as a cohort for immersive summer programs that focus on languages considered critical to US National Security.  This fully funded summer program has early November deadlines each year for programs that typically begin in June. Debra Clemans offers info sessions about this program in early Fall. See the site for more info: https://www.clscholarship.org/.