Our Mission Statement

Haenicke Institute Fact Sheet

The Diether H. Haenicke Institute for Global Education, established by the Board of Trustees in 1998, promotes and supports efforts towards globalization and internationalization of the academic environment of Western Michigan University. The Institute works closely with the International Education Council of the WMU Faculty Senate, as well as with international education committees and projects within and across colleges. Specific activities and responsibilities include:

  • International Partnerships: The Institute administers more than one hundred official partnerships between WMU and educational institutions around the world, and assists university faculty and staff in maintaining and developing partnerships for research, faculty and student exchange, and other types of collaboration.
  • Academic Programs: The Institute houses an undergraduate major program in global and international studies, and several minor programs in international and area studies in collaboration with the College of Arts and Sciences; occasional interdisciplinary courses in support of these programs are also offered. The Institute collaborates with all WMU colleges, departments, and interdisciplinary programs to strengthen global and international academic offerings through conferences, seminars, and by hosting several research centers and institutes.
  • Faculty Development: The International Faculty Hiring Initiative utilizes designated salary funds to enhance global and international expertise in departments through faculty hiring. The International Faculty Education and Development Fund, as well as other resources, assists in faculty research presentation and curriculum development focused on international education. The Institute website hosts numerous research databases and directories.
  • International Students: The University welcomed its first international student from Manitoba, Canada in 1910; more than 10,000 international students representing 110 countries have studied at WMU since then. The first exchange relationship with an international partner was formed in 1961, and exchanges now number 23 active partnerships. The first twinning program was founded between WMU and Sunway College in Malaysia in 1987. WMU has successfully operated twinning programs in many countries and currently has active programs in India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Kenya.

    In fall 2011, nearly 1,400 international students were enrolled at WMU, representing 92 countries. Through its International Admissions and Services office, the Institute provides a broad range of recruiting, admission, counseling, and immigration services.  A comprehensive introduction to WMU and information sessions related to academic success are available to incoming students through the International Student Orientation and Registration Program (ISORP) each spring and fall semester. The Institute’s International Student Activities office, in collaboration with the student-run International Programs Council, facilitates regular and ongoing international activities on campus, such as International Festival each March, and a weeklong celebration of International Education Week each November. The International Student Activities office also plans numerous service, cultural and recreational activities to help international students engage with the campus and local community.
  • Study Abroad: The University’s first study abroad program was launched in 1945. Currently, more than 500 WMU students study or complete internships overseas annually, selecting from more than 70 programs, including 23 short-term faculty-led programs, in 30-plus countries. WMU students collectively receive about $400,000 in scholarships annually from a variety of sources, including WMU’s President’s Grant for Study Abroad for foreign language-based study and the Dean’s Scholarship for Summer Study Abroad for enrollment in WMU’s short-term, faculty-led programs. The Study Abroad staff and faculty work diligently to ensure/advance the academic rigor of study abroad offerings and to ensure that credit earned overseas is applicable to each student’s WMU degree program.

  • Center for English Language and Culture for International Students (CELCIS): The University has provided English as a Second Language programming since 1975 through its Center for English Language and Culture for International Students, which currently has an enrollment of more than 200 students. The CELCIS program offers international students year-round intensive ESL courses in five levels, short-term intensive programs for guest students on campus and overseas, and credit-bearing English language classes. CELCIS also conducts an intensive training session and provides consultation services for international teaching assistants and faculty, and mentoring for pre-service ESL teachers. The program is engaged with the Southwest Michigan community through training services for business professionals, tutoring services for non-native English speakers, and consulting services for local educators about ESL instruction or cultural concerns. CELCIS is accredited by the Commission on English Language Program Accreditation and complies with the guidelines and regulations of the following organizations: CEA, TESOL, UCIEP, AAIEP, and NAFSA.
  • Immigration and Travel: The Institute includes a professionally staffed immigration services office, which provides immigration and visa services for international faculty scholars and visitors, new faculty and staff, and international students.  The Immigration Officer recommends international travel policy and procedures for WMU faculty and students. Immigration staff conduct optional practical training and employment regulation information sessions throughout the academic year. Potential health and security issues for WMU students, faculty and staff traveling abroad are reviewed, as needed, by the WMU Study Abroad Security and Health Review Council chaired by the Institute dean.
  • Community Outreach: The Institute is intended to become a resource and information center on globalization and internationalization for schools, public agencies, and citizen groups, a partner with public and private sector organizations with global involvement seeking collaboration with the university, and a focus for interinstitutional partnerships in global and international academic initiatives.

(Revised March 19, 2012)