Feb. 18, 2011
Dr. John Lorentz, professor emeritus and assistant provost for International Program Development at Shawnee State University, has been traveling throughout the world developing international programs, recruiting students and initiating relationships with universities in many countries.
Recently, the Department of Commerce has asked him to go to Vietnam and Indonesia for an educational trade fair. Francisco J. Sanchez, Undersecretary of Commerce for International Trade will lead the education mission from the United States to meet with international students and university officials and attend trade fairs in these countries.
"We will be meeting with university officials," Lorentz said. "My primary goal is to see if we can be a channel to bring some Indonesian and Vietnamese students to the United States."
He will be looking at the educational scene in Ho Chi Minh City, Hanoi and Jakarta and have an opportunity to showcase Shawnee State University. He will be exposed to nearly 10,000 students in these countries.
With a population of 86 million, a steadily increasing per capita income, a booming private sector, and the high value the Vietnamese place on education, Vietnam offers significant opportunities for Shawnee State University. Vietnam presently has over 20,000 students studying abroad, paying about $200 million in tuition and fees every year. Of those, 13,000 are studying in the US. Vietnam ranks ninth among countries sending students to the U.S. with an increase of 46 percent over last year.
Indonesia, as the world's fourth largest nation and one of the G-20's strongest economies, is a tremendous potential market for U.S. educational institutions. Most Indonesian students want to study abroad and the U.S. has been one of the most desired destinations.
"Circumstances have changed both economically and politically in both of these countries," Lorentz said. "This is a really good time for us at Shawnee State to go into these markets. We are at the beginning of what could be a big increase in the numbers of international students from these countries and fortunately we were chosen to be a part of this."
He also received an invitation from the government of Spain to travel to several cities in Spain with all expenses paid for one week, along with a few other guests, to meet with education officials.
"It's an honor to be chosen," Lorentz said. "We are moving well in the direction of international programs at Shawnee State."
He may be traveling to several other countries as well. After his trip to Spain, he will go to Jakarta to meet with the U.S. Department of Commerce group for the educational trade fair in Indonesia before going to Vietnam.