Dickinson Welcomes Visiting International Scholars
Note: This is the first in a series of profiles of international scholars. Watch for future editions of the Global Education newsletter for news about other visitors.
Alberto López from Málaga, Spain
Alberto López was recently welcomed to campus as an international visiting scholar for the fall 2008 semester, but this is not his first visit to Dickinson College. Alberto first came to the college as a non-matriculated Overseas Student Assistant (OSA) as part of the exchange agreement between the University of Málaga and Dickinson. His experiences in Carlisle had a tremendous impact on his career path. Alberto holds a degree in Translation Studies from the Universidad de Málaga, a B.A. in Modern Languages from the University of Wolverhampton (UK) and has completed doctoral coursework on Translation Studies at the Universidad de Málaga, where he also earned his teaching certificate.
Since Alberto has successfully made the switch to the other side of the lectern, we were curious to know his impressions of Dickinson students and the campus community. In response to our question about whether he has noticed any changes since his OSA days, he responded, "Dickinson students, in general, have a keen interest in the world and the campus community definitely provides that global agenda. The greatest change to the campus since I was an OSA has been the internationalization of the student body."
We're glad he noticed. In 1999 the international student population of campus was less than 1%, and nearly all of those students were exchanges. The college now boasts a nearly 7% international population with the overwhelming majority (90%) of international students being four-year matriculates.
Besides his experiences as a Dickinson student and his current teaching duties, Alberto has also worked closely with the Dickinson Program in Málaga. He has served as Assistant to the Director in Málaga and is a strong advocate of the benefits the program offers our students. He writes that "the Málaga Program allows students to acquire a highly beneficial experience from the academic standpoint while at the same time they live in a very enjoyable atmosphere which complements very well their main campus experience." The academic rigor of the University of Málaga and our own program greatly influenced and prepared Alberto for a career in academia.
Although he readily acknowledges that it is always difficult to leave friends, family and home, Alberto is also very happy to have this great opportunity to reunite with old friends and colleagues, and he has felt very welcomed by the college community. He writes, "It really makes a difference to arrive at a place where people make you feel at home."