University of Wyoming

People meander through the University of Wyoming commons area in January. 

File, Star-Tribune

The University of Wyoming hired a director and another adviser for its Education Abroad Office, part of the school’s push to boost its overseas programs.

The university hired Shelley Jewell for the newly created position of director of the office, which was previously called the Office of Study Abroad. Amanda Poppe was hired as an adviser. Both started on Oct. 2, according to a university press release.

The university’s strategic plan, approved by UW’s board of trustees in July, calls for the number of students and faculty studying abroad to jump from last year’s total of 425 to 650 by 2022. The number has hovered around 400 for several years, according to the release, attributable partly to a limited number of advisers.

“I feel very strongly about the impact and change that study abroad can have on students,” Jewell said in the press release. “ ... I believe it is our role in education abroad to support and encourage students to participate in programs from all disciplines and backgrounds, as well as to develop innovative programming that meets the needs of an increasingly diverse student body that seeks challenges outside of the traditional abroad models.”

The effort is the latest university move driven by the strategic plan, the creation of which President Laurie Nichols pushed after her arrival in spring 2016. In the months after the blueprint was advanced in July, the university has worked on a 10-year housing plan; hired administrators for enrollment, graduate education and its new Honors College; and formed task forces to study wages and engagement.

In addition to boosting study abroad opportunities, the plan targets increases in enrollment, retention rate, research funding, endowed faculty, and more.

Jewell was previously the director of Study Abroad at Belmont University in Tennessee, according to the release, where she doubled the total number of “faculty-led study-abroad opportunities” while tripling the number of students who participated in overseas programs. Before Belmont, she worked at Vanderbilt University.

Poppe previously worked as an international admissions recruiter at the University of Buffalo, according to the release.

Both women have master’s degrees and are Fulbright grant recipients.

Follow education reporter Seth Klamann on Twitter @SethKlamann

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Seth Klamann joined the Star-Tribune in 2016 and covers education and health. A 2015 graduate of the University of Missouri and proud Kansas City native, Seth worked for newspapers in Milwaukee and Omaha before coming to Casper.

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