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Global Citizenship Award Recipients Announced!

Fartun Dirie
student award recipient

Fartun Dirie, a senior at UST and a McNair graduate, is this year’s president of the Globally Minded Student Association. As such, she is involved in planning globally-minded events on campus, including CultureFest and the International Dinner. Fartun has played many roles as a global citizen during her time here, both on and off campus. She has been an International Student Ambassador, a tutor for immigrants at the St. Paul Public Library, and the host of a weekly English language conversation circle for English language learners. On top of her many globally-minded extra-curricular activities, Fartun is globally minded academically. She received an award for her Geography research about Somalis’ perceptions of the Twin Cities, and last summer at Brown University she presented an undergraduate research project about health care delivery in Mozambique. Fartun’s nominator wrote: “As a Muslim woman of Somali heritage, Fartun is quite conscious of the need to include other cultures and viewpoints and has a consistent, demonstrated track record of doing so.” We are honored to present her with this award.

Susan Smith-Cunnien
faculty award recipient

Susan Smith-Cunnien has been a UST sociology professor since 1990. She was among the first in the sociology department to embrace comparative perspectives, especially around issues of criminal justice. She developed and taught SOCI 480: Seminar in Criminal Justice using materials and experiences that reflect the range of criminal justice in societies worldwide. She taught short-term study abroad courses to both Ghana and Mali. She helped lead an on-campus initiative on global Minnesota, presented papers in local, national, and international venues on intercultural topics, and contributed a chapter to The Other People: Interdisciplinary Perspectives in Migration, published in 2013. She is recognized off campus for her research and service on behalf of the local and global communities, and in 2005 she received the Distinguished Sociologist Award by Sociologists of Minnesota. Susan’s nominator declares, “Sue Smith-Cunnien will be retiring from employment at the University of ST. Thomas at the end of this academic year. However, her personal model of gracious inclusiveness and embrace of global citizenship will continue to inspire me and many others. I can think of no faculty member more deserving of the Global Citizenship Award.”

Nominations Closed for 2013-2014 Global Citizenship Award

The award is open to all faculty (including adjunct), staff and students of the University of St. Thomas with the exception of International Programs staff members, who are excluded from receiving the award.

The University of St. Thomas Global Citizenship Award honors a member(s) of the St. Thomas community whose personal or professional work brings the concept of global citizenship to their department, classroom, residence hall or student club.

Any St. Thomas faculty (including adjunct), staff, student, or alumnus may nominate a member of the campus community (including self-nomination).  The deadline for nomination was Friday, March 21, 2014. 

A completed nomination form is required and must be submitted by the deadline.  A nomination form can be downloaded here: GCA Nomination Form

Candidates must be a St. Thomas faculty (adjuncts included), staff member or a student and must demonstrate global citizenship through one or more of the following criteria:

• Consistent efforts to be respectful and inclusive of other cultures and viewpoints
• Contributions that improve the climate at the University of St. Thomas for other cultures and people
• Connections made between the University of St. Thomas community and the world

The staff of the International Programs is comprised of the offices of the International Education Center, International Student Services and ELS Language Center.  We select a candidate or candidates from the nominations submitted.

The presentation of the awards was made at the 25th Annual International Dinner , which was held Saturday, April 26, 2014. 

For more information call the International Education Center, (651) 962-6450, or e-mail

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©2013 University of St. Thomas · Minnesota
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Last modified 05/05/2014