Winter 2018

International Alumni Newsletter

Students Celebrate Mid-Autumn Festival

image of people at Mid-Autumn Festival

As part of the university's annual Cultural Series, the Office of the Provost, Center for International Affairs, Office of Student Affairs and the Office of Multicultural Affairs host Asian Mid-Autumn Festival - a holiday celebrated throughout much of East Asia.  Mid-Autumn is a time to rest in the midst of the harvest and enjoy time with family.  Each country and culture has its own traditions, and we incorporate as many of them as possible.

On October 4, 2017, more than 500 students lined up outside Thwing Center for our Mid-Autumn Festival celebration. On their way in, students received picnic blankets as gifts for the festival. Once inside, they were greeted by student organizations from throughout campus, each demonstrating ways they celebrate Mid-Autumn at home. Upstairs in Thwing Ballroom, the aroma of delicious foods filled the space, and students enjoyed treats from Asian restaurants throughout Cleveland.  Additionally, we had mooncakes and sesame rice balls filled with red bean paste for everyone to enjoy.

Mid-Autumn is a time for strengthening the bonds of the family, and our event at CWRU does just that for the campus.  Students from first-year undergraduates to PhD candidates, from Korea, Iran, the UK and the US and faculty and staff from departments across campus come together to celebrate our CWRU Community.  Next year, if you’re in Cleveland in the fall, join us for Mid-Autumn festival!  Our event will likely take place in late September. All are welcome!

Civil Engineering Professor Named First Provost's Faculty Fellow in International Affairs

image of David (Xiangwu) Zeng

Dr. David ​(Xiangwu) ​Zeng, ​chair of the Department of Civil Engineering​ ​and Frank H. Neff Professor​,​​ ​has been appointed the ​first ​Provost's Faculty Fellow in International Affairs, recognizing his commitment to making Case Western Reserve a global university.

Provost William A. “Bud” Baeslack III made this appointment based on the recommendation of David Fleshler, vice provost for international affairs. “As a leader on campus and a mentor to international students, Dr. Zeng has been one of CWRU’s most active faculty members in promoting the internationalization of the university. He is the ideal person to serve as the inaugural Provost’s Faculty Fellow,” said Vice Provost Fleshler.

Dr. Zeng is the faculty advisor for the Chinese Students and Scholars Association and teaches a summer study abroad course in engineering each year at Tianjin University. He also advises his school and the university in efforts involving international universities, governments and organizations to assist the internationalization of CWRU. 

In his role as faculty fellow, Zeng serves alongside Fleshler as co-chair of the International Affairs Advisory Council (IAAC). The IAAC has been reestablished by the Center for International Affairs (CIA) this semester to help guide the ongoing internationalization of CWRU. Its membership includes faculty members from across all of the schools and the college, as well as deans and administrators. Zeng will also work closely with the CIA during his tenure as Faculty Fellow. 

“I am amazed by the progress made in the internationalization of CWRU in recent years and I look forward to new opportunities for international collaborations,” said Zeng.

Crain’s Cleveland Recognizes CWRU Faculty & Alumni in “Forty Under 40” Feature 

Crain’s Cleveland Business, a digital media outlet which focuses on the Cleveland area, has highlighted three CWRU faculty and three recent alumni in their 2017 “Forty Under 40” cohort. The forty under 40 are leaders in their respective fields and all under 40 years of age.

Read about this year’s Forty Under 40 cohort here and here.

Promising Down Syndrome Research Expands to Second Site in Brazil

A Case Western Reserve University-led study of a promising medication for people with Down syndrome is going global.

Brazilian authorities’ recent approval of a clinical trial in São Paulo not only increases the diversity of participants in the project begun in Cleveland, but also provides an opportunity to double their number. The combination of these factors mean that the ultimate results will be that much more credible—and valuable—to pursuing successful treatments. Learn More  

President Barbara R. Snyder’s Visit to Shanghai

image of Inaugural Reception in Shanghai, China

On October 31, President Barbara R. Snyder addressed the inaugural reception and dinner in Shanghai, China, highlighting university-wide achievements. The evening served to expand our global reach to alumni, friends and parents of Case Western Reserve University. About 240 alumni, parents, guests and current dual-degree students from Tongji University gathered at The Peninsula Shanghai to enjoy dinner and a presentation from President Snyder. The event also was attended by CWRU Trustee Larry Sears (CIT ‘69), Board Member of The Alumni Association Roger Wei (CWR ‘96), School of Law Dean Michael Scharf, Assistant Professor of Law and Associate Director for the Foreign Graduate LLM Program Jack Turner (LAW ‘02), and Chairman and H. Clark Ford Professor of Banking and Finance at Weatherhead School of Management Dr. Anurag Gupta. 

View more pictures from the event here

Wish CWRU a Happy New Year!

Year Of The Dog

Lunar New Year is around the corner, and we want to invite all of you to wish CWRU students a happy new year for 2018.

Every year, the Office of the Provost, Center for International Affairs, Office of Multicultural Affairs and Office of Student Affairs present a series of cultural events, including an all-campus celebration of Lunar New Year.  These events demonstrate CWRU’s care for its international students and give the entire campus an opportunity to connect with international traditions.  Each year more than 500 students join university staff and faculty at the Tinkham Veale University Center for traditional snacks, special gifts and a fireworks display to celebrate the holiday.

This year, we’d like to invite YOU to join us for the Lunar New Year! Join us on campus on Friday, February 16, 2018, at 8:00 pm.  If you live outside of Cleveland, we’d love to hear from you. Send a photo of you by yourself or with friends or family holding signs that read “Happy New Year” in any language, or send us a video (10 seconds or less) telling the CWRU community your New Year’s wish for the university. Whether you say Feliz Año Nuevo, ལོ་གསར་བཀྲ་ཤིས་བདེ་ལེགས, 新年快乐, or كل عام وأنتَ بخير, we’d love to hear from you!

Send your photos or videos to with Lunar New Year in the subject line no later than Friday, February 2, 2018, and we’ll show them at the event.

Thank you and happy new year!

Study Abroad - Alumni Connections program

image of girl in telephone booth looking at Big Ben in London, England

Created by the Center for International Affairs and The Alumni Association, CWRU's Study Abroad Alumni Connections brings international alumni together with current students pursuing study abroad opportunities. Alumni can play an important role in helping students adapt to life and learning outside the United States, and hear a current student’s perspective on CWRU.

To start the discussion, students and alumni are matched via email either before the student’s departure or during their international stay. As conversations continue, students and alumni may arrange meet-ups, including ones that allow alumni to show-off their country to student visitors. Depending on class size, a group dinner for students and local alumni may be arranged.

Matches are made for the duration of the student’s study abroad program, ranging from one academic year to one semester. Alumni who are interested in connecting with study abroad students can contact Chamois Williams, associate director of alumni outreach & affinity programs.

Did you know? -- CWRU's 2017 International Student Highlights

  • The total number of international students at CWRU has been steadily climbing for 10 years straight, to an all-time high of 2,726 students in Fall 2017 (enrolled and OPT). 
  • The percentage of the student body that is international has also been steadily climbing and is now nearly 20%.
  • At CWRU, international students make up the highest percentage of the overall student population in the Weatherhead School of Management (44.6%), School of Law (32.8%) and Case School of Engineering (30.2%).
  • CWRU continues its commitment to creating a global campus, as demonstrated in sharp increases in enrollment of students from Saudi Arabia (19.7%), Vietnam (54.2%) and United Arab Emirates (64.7%).
  • Students are staying longer than ever before, taking advantage of work opportunities in the US provided through Optional Practical Training and the OPT STEM extension. While students are on OPT, they are still affiliated with the university and counted in the overall population of international students.
  • According to data compiled by Open Doors and NAFSA in the 2016-2017 academic year, CWRU’s international students contributed over $103 million to the economy and supported 1,562 jobs, far outpacing any other higher education institution in Northeast Ohio.
  • CWRU international students’ contributions to the economy were the 4th highest in Ohio for the 2016-2017 academic year, behind #1 Ohio State University ($228.3 million), #2 Miami University ($117.5 million), #3 University of Cincinnati ($112 million), and followed by #5 Kent State University ($78.8 million) and #6 University of Dayton ($71.6 million).