World’s Largest International Education Conference Comes to Los Angeles, with Support of USC

The Spirit of Troy plays “Como Ves” with Ozomotli at LA Live during NAFSA’s opening night celebration.

The National Association for Foreign Student Affairs (NAFSA), the world’s largest association dedicated to advancing international education, launched its annual conference over the Memorial Day weekend with a Community Celebration featuring the Spirit of Troy and Ozomatli, the two-time Grammy award-winning Latin rock band from Los Angeles. In celebration of the nearly 10,000 attendees, the USC Trojan Marching Band played “Fight On,” “Tusk” and others and ended their set by playing “Como Ves” in collaboration with Ozomatli.

The conference, themed “Expanding Community, Strengthening Connections,” drew international educators and delegations from over 100 countries to learn and share best practices with the global education community from May 28-June 2. In keeping with USC’s leadership in international education and Provost Michael Quick’s prioritization of global impact, USC was the exclusive sponsor of the Community Celebration on opening night and hosted multiple international education activities on and off campus during the course of the conference. “USC’s partners are prestigious institutions from all over the world, and this is an outstanding opportunity to welcome them to campus to share our recent developments,” said Anthony Bailey, vice president for strategic and global initiatives.

NAFSA Engages with USC during the Conference

In honor of USC’s network of select global partners, USC’s Office for Strategic and Global Initiatives hosted a campus tour and reception for university partners, including members of the Association of Pacific Rim Universities (APRU), of which USC is a founding member and USC President C. L. Max Nikias is outgoing Chairman. “USC has always been a leader in international education, beginning with international students in our first graduating class.  Today USC, along with global partners, are revolutionizing international education through groundbreaking programs. Supporting NAFSA’s annual conference is an important way to share USC’s enthusiasm for global engagement with the higher education community,” said Bailey.

A pioneer in experiential international business education, USC Marshall School of Business hosted the Business International Studies Network (BisNet) NAFSA meeting and reception at the new Jill and Frank Fertitta Hall on the University Park campus. An international education forum for 27 top business schools in the US, BisNet members and their partners from around the world joined the USC Marshall staff to strengthen their ties and international student programs. USC Marshall counts 50 partnerships in 23 countries, and approximately 2,000 students per year who participate in international exchange, faculty-led international courses, an international case competition and international internships.

USC Viterbi School of Engineering, one of the engineering schools with the highest number of international graduate students in the US, hosted an Open House for partners and friends. USC Viterbi’s Office of Graduate and Professional Programs offered a campus tour and welcome remarks by Dr. Andrea Belz, Vice Dean of Technology Innovation and Entrepreneurship, along with visits to the USC Viterbi Robotics and Game Development labs.

A select group of senior administrators and faculty from African institutions of higher education, NAFSA’s Global Dialogue Fellows, visited USC Libraries for a tour and an overview of the USC library system and the resources that it offers USC students and faculty. USC’s William Dotson, Director of Grants and Research Communications, shared with the Fellows about how librarians, collections, digital infrastructure and library spaces support teaching and research at USC.  “It was also a great opportunity for our librarians to learn from the visiting Fellows about how higher education operates in their home countries,” said Dotson.

By Angela McCracken