October 02 through October 31, 2014
Oman's exhibition promoting tolerance, understanding and peaceful coexistence opened for the second time in the United States on October 2, 2014 at Kennesaw State University, located approximately 20 miles from Atlanta, Georgia. The university's modern campus in a rural setting is conducive to academic learning for the 25,000 students enrolled here.
The American Association of State Colleges and Universities has awarded Kennesaw State University an award for excellence and innovation in international education, one of only two such awards presented among the organization’s 400 member institutions nationwide.
Among the initiatives cited for the AASCU honor is Kennesaw State’s 30-year-old “Year of” annual country study program that dedicates each academic year to a particular country or region. The program features more than 30 lectures, performances, exhibits and other cultural events and an international conference throughout the year. During the 2014-2015 academic year, the University is celebrating “Year of the Arabian Peninsula.”
“The country study program has introduced thousands of Kennesaw State students to the rich diversity of world cultures that make up the human family,” said Daniel Paracka, director of academic initiatives for the University’s Global Affairs Division. “Annually, it results in the creation of new courses and curriculum, research projects, education abroad programs, and global partnerships. Its success is based upon campus-wide collaboration and input, and is based upon and builds upon the expertise of our faculty, staff and students.”
On behalf of the President Daniel Papp, Dr. Daniel Paracka welcomed the approx. 100 students, staff, faculty and guests in attendance at the exhibition opening, and introduced the other speakers.
“This award validates the extremely high value Kennesaw State places on international education,” said Lance Askildson, the University’s vice provost for global affairs and chief international officer. “The institution is profoundly committed to educating globally competent students who can understand and navigate cultural differences as both successful professionals and engaged citizens.”
Representing the Sultanate of Oman, counselor Salim Al Kindi, and information attaché Hanan Al Kindi, from Oman's embassy in Washington, D.C., expressed their gratitude to the university for hosting the exhibition in such beautiful surroundings.
A member of the exhibition's organizing team, Michael Dickinson, offered a few words on the background and evolution of the exhibition, and distributed samples of genuine Omani frankincense, and DVDs with the documentary film "Religious Tolerance in Oman," produced specifically to accompany the exhibition.