Gordon in the News: last updated 02/21/2011

Gordon Students in CCCU Middle East Studies Program Safe

January 31, 2011

Jo Kadlecek
Office of College Communications

WENHAM, MA—This semester 88 Gordon College students are enrolled in either domestic or international studies programs throughout 20 countries, including four seniors and one junior who are currently enrolled in the Middle East Studies Program (MESP) based in Cairo, Egypt, where recent political clashes have risen. However, the students were traveling and far from the center of Cairo when recent protests occurred.

As a member of the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU), Gordon regularly sends students to CCCU BestSemester programs like the MESP. Of the 28 CCCU students enrolled in the MESP this semester, all are safe and well-supervised, according to Lindsey Podguski, international programs advisor at the CCCU.

“This is a unique and interesting opportunity for our five students to discuss the political process throughout the Middle East,” said Cliff Hersey, dean of Gordon’s Global Education Department. “We’ve been in constant touch with the CCCU about the status of the students, and they are now en route to Istanbul for a previously scheduled study time.”

Hersey said that other aspects of the Middle East Studies Program have always included travels to various regions and cities in Egypt, Israel and Turkey. As of February 2, the group had arrived safely in another country.

Since its founding in 1889, Gordon College has sent students around the world for study opportunities. In fact, nearly 40 percent of current students participate in some off-campus curriculum programs by the time they graduate.

Other programs where Gordon students are enrolled include: Gordon IN programs, Budapest Semester in Mathematics, Creation Cares Studies Program, Council on International Educational Exchange Programs, China Studies Institute, University of Edinburgh, Heidelberg German Program, and Jerusalem University College.

“Our students in the Middle East Studies Program are currently expected to continue their semester in Turkey,” said Hersey. “Our concerns of the situation are real, but we know they are in good hands with people who have a strong track record for American students overseas. If there’s a need to change course at any moment, I’m sure we will ensure the well-being of our students. But for now we’ll wait and see so they can get the full benefit of their educational experience.”

Gordon College is a multidenominational Christian college of the liberal arts and sciences on Boston’s North Shore, offering majors in 38 fields with graduate programs in education and music education. Gordon is nationally recognized for excellence in academics and in character building, and ranks as one of the nation’s top Christian colleges. www.gordon.edu