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Mellon Grant to Support NY6 International Initiatives

St. Lawrence University and the other colleges and universities that comprise the New York Six Liberal Arts Consortium will receive a three-year $1.25 million grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support an international initiative aimed at strengthening global education. 

The New York Six members are Colgate University, Hamilton College, Hobart and William Smith Colleges, St. Lawrence University, Skidmore College and Union College.

The grant will fund the New York Six International Initiative that “will assist the member schools in expanding the global aspects of their curricula and engaging students and faculty in the study of global issues, both at the home campuses and abroad.”

“This offers us a great chance to multiply the benefits of off-campus study and intercultural education on our multiple campuses by taking advantages of the strengths of each institution in ways we haven’t done before,” said Karl Schonberg, associate dean of international studies at St. Lawrence. “We hope to offer our students more opportunities to engage with the diversity of the world, and our faculty the new possibilities for collaboration in teaching and research.”

The Consortium’s proposal to the Mellon Foundation noted the importance of providing students with an international perspective as part of the undergraduate experience.

“We hope to provide opportunities for even more students to participate in the life-changing experience of off-campus study on one of SLU’s programs,” Schonberg said. “Through the generosity of this grant, the Mellon Foundation has opened a range of interesting possibilities for our students that we’re eager to take advantage of.”

Members of the New York Six have individually made substantial commitments to global education by expanding their study abroad programs, building international perspectives into their curricula, and enrolling greater numbers of international students. Through the grant, the institutions seek to increase opportunities while finding efficiencies through collaboration.

Components of the program will include The New York Six Update-Global Collective; study abroad collaboration; language learning groups in the less-frequently taught languages; the New York Six International Student Community; and the Connected Consortium Partnership, which will enable the use of technology-based interaction through a previous collaboration between New York Six libraries. The grant will also enable the New York Six to hire a full-time project manager for the initiative.

Holly Foster of Hamilton College contributed to this report.