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International Studies Teacher Ambassador Program - for Rural Arizona and New Mexico Teachers


The University of Arizona Center for Middle Eastern Studies and Center for Latin American Studies present the International Studies Teacher Ambassador Program 


(made possible by an award sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Education and Cultural Affairs, with funding provided by the U.S. Government and administered by IREX)

Call for applications:

July 19-August 26, 2019

Description of the Program:

The International Studies Teacher Ambassador (ISTA) program will support 10 teams - each comprised of 2 K-12 educators from rural school districts in Arizona and New Mexico. The 20 selected participants will train (through a weekend workshop - 2-night hotel stay and a travel stipend provided - and a self-paced online program) to become International Studies Teacher Ambassadors. Participants will receive certificates recognizing their leadership role in international education, funding to attend a weekend workshop in Tucson (sponsored by the U.S. State Department), and $250 per team to implement a teacher training or cultural project of their choice within their district or community.

The program is organized by two Title VI U.S. Department of Education-endorsed National Resource Centers at the University of Arizona: the Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMES) and the Center for Latin American Studies (LAS).  Funding for the weekend workshop is provided by IREX with U.S. State Department money; CMES and LAS are funding the rest of the program.

Program Requirements:

Selected particiants are required to:
  • Attend and participate fully in a weekend workshop in Tucson from on Saturday, September 28, 2019. (Participants will be provided with a hotel room from Friday, September 27 through Saturday, September 29. A stipend will be provided for travel expenses and meals.)   
  • Work as a two-person team to develop and implement a program within their school, district, or community. (The program may be a professional development event for district teachers, a cultural event for the community, the creation of an international studies course for high school or middle school students, or another project that would contribute to your district. (A principal's or district administrator's approval is required.)   
  • Participate in a sef-paced, online program in fall 2019 that includes 20 hours of readings and recorded talks designed to give you practical assistance in adding international content to your particular classes.
  • Write a brief report (with photos if possible) on the district project.
  • Attend a follow-up meeting near the end of 2020 (either in person or through an online format).

Who Is Eligible to Apply:    

You are eligible to apply if you fulfil ALL of the following requirements:

  • You are a FULL-TIME K-12 educator in a public, private, or charter school.
  • You teach in a school located in a rural area of Arizona or New Mexico. (Teachers in the Tucson, Phoenix, or Albuquerque metropolitan area are NOT eligible to apply.)  
  • You are able to meet the program requirements listed above, including attendance at the Sept. 28 workshop.
  • You are committed to professional development and sharing what you learn with others - and have the approval from a principal or district official to conduct a project of benefit to your school and community.
  • You do not plan to leave teaching within the next three years.

If you have any questions about your eligibility, please contact Lisa Adeli - adeli@email.arizona.edu - or Clea Conlin - cconlin@email.arizona.edu - before applying. 

How to Apply:

  • Find a teammate to work with you on this project. Teams may include two teachers in different subject areas or grade levels from the same school (for example a high school Biology teacher and a high school Social Studies teacher or a 2nd grade and a 5th grade teacher), teachers of the same subject in different area schools (English teachers from two different middle schools), etc.    
  • Discuss preliminary project ideas with your teammate and principal or district administrator. Remember that you can change or adjust your plans as you gain more information. It's just important to be sure that you have district support for your project. 
  • See the application directions - BELOW - for instructions on writing the application essay (one per team).
  • Fill out and get signatures for the cover page - BELOW (one per team). Note: Documents could only be put on this website as PDFs. If you want the cover page as a Word document, email adeli@email.arizona.edu, and she can send it to you.
  • Email the cover sheet and essay to adeli@email.arizona.edu and cconlin@email.arizona.edu by midnight on August 26, 2019.   


PDF icon Application instructions.pdf255.67 KB
PDF icon Application cover page.pdf192.75 KB

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