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IHE Boosts Croatian Commitment

The IHE continues its longstanding commitment to Croatian higher education with a trip in October to participate in two nationwide scholarship fairs. Sheila Slaughter will present the keynote address and several IHE faculty, including Rob Toutkoushian, will be giving a workshop on funding institutions of higher education and its students. Libby Morris and emeritus faculty member Ed Simpson will introduce the Higher Education Initiative for Southeastern Europe (HEISEE) to researchers, administrators, policy makers, and government officials from Croatia and other regional countries who will be attending the fairs. The HEISEE initiative is an alliance with three organizations: Institute for Social Research in Zagreb and its Centre for Educational Research and Development, the Institute for the Development of Education, and the Agency for Science and Education. They are working cooperatively with the Public Affairs Office of the United States Embassy in Zagreb to advance the project.

The new regional initiative, HEISEE, will operate as an independent entity serving the countries comprising its membership and offering opportunity for networking for regional consultations, communications, conferences and meetings. The IHE will pursue the overarching goal of enhancing post-secondary education throughout the region. Scholars and practitioners will have the opportunity to study the field of higher education in an effort to devise integrated and sustained strategies for regional improvement. A major objective in the near future is the training practitioners and researchers as administrators and policy analysts by offering graduate degree programs under the auspices of the initiative and/or selected international universities. Emphasis will also focus on faculty and curriculum development, facilities management, student life issues and the myriad other tasks associated with operation of a university.

A group of faculty and administrators from Croatia visited the Institute in April to continue discussion on the creation of a regional program for higher education to be based, at least initially, in the Institute for Social Research in Zagreb’s Centre for Educational Research and Development. The HEISEE initiative was created during the visit, which offered the delegation the opportunity to view the multifaceted IHE as a model for the region using a threefold mission of teaching, research, and outreach. Opportunities discussed for collaboration in the partnership between IHE and the new initiative included student recruitment and faculty collaborations.

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