E THE ACADEMIC GATEWAY TO THE RUSSIAN FAR EAST, THE NORTH PAClFlC, THE ARCTIC AND THE CIRCUMPOLAR NORTH
UAF has initiated a number of significant international projects via the International Programs Office, Nordic House, agreements with foreign universities, and individual faculty contacts through research programs. We participate in several exchange programs such as the Greenlandic Exchange, artistic and athletic exchanges, and the Sister Cities Program. Community and business groups throughout Alaska have also initiated thriving international exchanges. By coordinating the efforts already underway, and drawing on the expertise of local leaders and current faculty and staff, UAF can become the academic gateway to particular northern regions of international prominence.
Millions of people have a stake in how the newly-opened regions of Russia develop. Our connections with Pacific Rim nations will have a tremendous impact on our own economic development. UAF's expertise in Arctic research and environmental and scientific policy positions us perfectly to prepare others to study northern regions. To achieve these goals we propose that UAF:
- Create an International Educational Center.
- The UAF International Educational Center will offer cooperative, intensive short-term sessions. Scientists, scholars, business leaders, officials, and students will gather here to study, give and receive training, exchange ideas and views, conduct research and share knowledge.
- The Center will be organized around UAF's existing strengths, and will coordinate UAF's international activities and projects.
- The Center will integrate international programs with the communications facilities available at UAF--specifically KUAC, UA Press, film-making groups, and distance delivery facilities. The integration of telecommunications and international programs will allow the Center to showcase UAF's programs and projects, and to highlight Alaskan research.
- The Center will foster an interdisciplinary approach, bringing together people to study languages, cultural awareness, research conditions, business opportunities, and current international projects in a wide variety of fields.
- UAF's International Center will be the place people come to prepare for extended research or study in our target regions, as well as the place they return to do follow-up and collaborative work. The Center will be an emblem of UAF's commitment to the northern region, and to the people of many nations who live and work there.
- Use the Center to:
- Develop links with other northern organizations such as the Inuit Circumpolar Conference, Northern Forum, Alaska Federation of Natives, the International Whaling Commission, embassies of northern nations, and selected research consortia. The Center will coordinate its efforts with other universities including UAA and UAS. It will forge strong links with community and business groups already active in these areas.
- Coordinate efforts of the U.S. State Department, USIA, AID, and other government agencies to focus their interest on the Russian Far East through Alaska and UAF's International Center.