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Impact x2 Qais

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How can we work together to promote better cultural understanding worldwide?

Qais Akbar Omar (GRS’16), a graduate student in the Creative Writing Program, has published a much-praised memoir, A Fort of Nine Towers: An Afghan Family Story. He recalls how the violence and tumult of civil war jolted his family, who, despite losing relatives, their home, and possessions, continued to nurture his wish to attend a university.

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Arts & Sciences is the heart of a global research and teaching university. Our students hail from more than 100 countries, comprising one of the largest international student populations of any American university. Our faculty is also international in its origins, and our teaching and scholarship encompass the world’s cultures and societies. A key part of the CAS mission is to prepare students to live and work in a global society.

Many universities talk about “internationalizing the curriculum,” but international and global studies at CAS have long been an important focus of the research and teaching of almost all our humanities and social science departments and programs.

The Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies, which officially opened at the beginning of the Fall 2014 semester, leverages the University’s existing strengths in international and area studies to advance human progress and improve the human condition. Housed within CAS and GRS, the Pardee School consists of two divisions: International Studies and Regional Studies, combining under one roof the University’s International Relations program and various area studies programs and centers.

The School’s Division of International Studies, home to our renowned International Relations program, offers a special blend of academic and practical applications of international affairs. As the largest major in CAS, International Relations offers a multidisciplinary curriculum that encompasses not only the traditional studies of politics, trade, investments, war, and peace, but also social science-oriented studies in history, economics, geography, anthropology, and other disciplines. In addition, the department offers a range of MA programs geared toward students who want careers in international affairs.

The Division of Regional Studies comprises the BU centers and programs dedicated to the study of Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East and North Africa, and the Muslim World. African Studies, founded in 1953, is the oldest African Studies program in the country and a designated Title VI Center. Asian Studies, including the Center for the Study of Asia, the Asian Studies Interdisciplinary Program, and the International Center for East Asian Archaeology & Cultural History, is a dynamic area of study at BU. A new major in Middle East & North Africa Studies and minors in Muslim Cultures and Muslim Societies put us at the forefront of scholarship in this important area of global study.

At CAS, you can find an international dimension in almost every discipline, from Modern Languages & Comparative Literature to Earth & Environment to Religion. We work hard to break down disciplinary boundaries and international boundaries, forging strong partnerships with academic institutions across the globe. And our students take advantage of 75 study abroad programs in over 20 countries. In short, CAS is a tremendous place to gain highly valuable experience for a globalized world and workplace.