CWU News

CWU Seeks to Expand International Outreach to Eurasia

Katherine Frank, CWU provost and vice president for academic and student life. presents at the EURIE summit in TurkeyThe 13 countries that comprise Eurasia hold great promise for international higher education. Those opportunities are now being explored by CWU.

Katherine Frank, CWU provost and vice president for academic and student life; and Ediz Kaykayoglu, executive director of the Office of International Studies and Programs, recently visited Istanbul, Turkey to present at EURIE, the Eurasia Higher Education Summit, where they conducted the joint presentation titled “The value of international education.”

“Because Central is known to offer a welcoming and safe environment for international students and faculty—as well as many potential learning and research opportunities—a lot of enthusiasm was shown by institutions there to partner with us,” Frank said.

The annual EURIE summit provides for discussions on challenges facing higher education today and concerning best practices for internationalization of higher education, to generate partnership opportunities—including on student and staff exchanges—and to understand recruitment in the Eurasian region.

Eurasia, which extends from the borders of the European Union to the Far East, includes Afghanistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Mongolia, the Republic of Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan.

At present, CWU has yet to established a formalized relationship with a sister institution in any of those countries. However, the groundwork for doing that may have been laid.

Before attending the conference, Frank met with top officials from Hacettepe University in Ankara, Turkey, where a memorandum of understanding was signed calling for further discussions on potential areas of cooperation.

“Creating such partnerships is essential for continuing to internationalize our university, enhance student learning for our those who cannot study abroad, and to create additional pathways for students and faculty wishing to participate on overseas study or research,” Frank explained.

In addition, Kaykayoglu met with official from Özyeğin University in Istanbul to discuss other possible collaborative ties. He also represented CWU at an IEFT (International Education Fairs of Turkey) recruitment event, where he met with more than 100 interested students from that country and throughout Eurasia. 

“Turkey is seen as the bridge between east and west,” said Kaykayoglu. “With the new developments that are happening in the region, in terms of international education, and with Turkey having a large population of university-aged students who are aware of the importance of study abroad, we are working now to align CWU to be a key destination for Eurasian students.”

Media contact: Robert Lowery, CWU Public Affairs, 509-963-1487,

Photo: Katherine Frank, CWU provost and vice president for academic and student life, discussing “The value of international education” at EURIE, the Eurasia Higher Education Summit, in Istanbul, Turkey.