SUNY New Paltz Furthers International Relations

NEW PALTZ — Recently in Prague, SUNY New Paltz President Roger Bowen signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Charles University, the oldest and most prestigious university in Central Europe.

The visit to Prague was part of a whirlwind, week-long visit to the Czech Republic, Greece and Russia by Bowen and Bruce Sillner, director of the Center for International Programs at SUNY New Paltz.

“The Memorandum of Understanding is an agreement which ensures further cooperation between the universities in terms of expanded possibilities for student exchange and faculty collaboration,” said Sillner.

“New Paltz is honored to have this relationship with Charles and looks forward to welcoming its students and faculty to our campus,” said Bowen.

For several years, New Paltz has had a relationship with the Faculty of Arts at Charles University, and this past spring semester 12 New Paltz students attended Charles University as part of an exchange with that institution.

Bowen and Sillner also attended a dinner in honor of the first cohort of seven students from the University of New York, Prague (UNYP) who will enroll at SUNY New Paltz for the fall 2001 semester. The dinner was also attended by Barbara Adams, former president of Ulster County Community College, who now serves as the provost of the University of New York, Prague and Michael Gayle, a SUNY New Paltz associate professor of psychology who has been conducting faculty development workshops at UNYP.

On the next leg of their journey, Bowen and Sillner both spoke at the dedication of the Thesaloniki branch campus of New York College, the long-time New Paltz partner in Greece. The branch was opened to serve students primarily from the Balkan region. The first students from the Thesaloniki branch are likely to enroll in New Paltz in the fall of 2003.

The trip concluded with a visit by Bowen to Moscow, where he met with officials from the American Council of Teachers of Russian/American Council for Collaboration in Education and Language Study. There was discussion of the enrollment of students from the Newly Independent States in the New Paltz Institute for International Business.

Before returning to New Paltz, Sillner flew to St. Petersburg and visited St. Petersburg State Technical University and St. Petersburg State University, where he discussed possibilities for reviving the SUNY New Paltz summer study abroad program that had been conducted in that city before the collapse of the Soviet Union.