purple graphic of globe

St. John’s Global Initiatives Newsletter

Vol 5 | Issue 1

I’m happy to bring you another edition of the St. John’s Global Initiatives Newsletter. It is always a pleasure for me to write this introduction, as it encourages me to stop and take a moment to reflect on all the global activities happening at the University.  

Simon Møller speaking at podium

I hope you were able to join in some of our International Education Week activities in November, some of which are highlighted in this issue. As previewed in our fall edition, the week was a wonderful representation of the global mission of St. John’s and the collaborative nature of the work that is done to advance it. 

Maria Mello speaking at podium with St. John's University logo on it

One such event that brought this home was our Global Gathering. During the luncheon, we celebrated all things global and heard from Simon G. Møller, Ph.D., Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, about his first days as a study abroad student in London, England, and how challenging the language barrier was. He recounted feeling terrified and then relieved when he was recognized by a professor on campus as an international student. The initial conversation and connection with that professor helped make him feel like a part of his new University community. Dr. Møller’s anecdote was a powerful reminder about how important—and how easy—it is to make our international students feel at home at St. John’s.

Maria P. Mello, Ph.D., Assistant Professor, Education Specialties, The School of Education, shared how her Global Online Learning Exchange with a Brazilian university allowed her and her students to “connect in novel ways” that have continued to have an impact on them a year later. Following the speeches, we shared delicious food from countries around the world and continued the conversation about how global learning enhances our lives as students, faculty, administrators, or staff.

Global Gathering guests pose for a photo around a red table

It is impossible for me to talk about global learning without acknowledging the conflicts and suffering taking place around the world: in Israel and Gaza, in Ukraine, Afghanistan, Syria, Armenia and Azerbaijan…the list can seem endless and discouraging and can make celebrations like this one feel almost out of place.

But in the words of the late Senator J. William Fulbright, “International educational exchange is the most significant current project designed to continue the process of humanizing mankind to the point…that [we] can learn to live in peace—eventually even to cooperate in constructive activities rather than compete in a mindless contest of mutual destruction” and that “perhaps the greatest power of such intellectual exchange is to convert nations into peoples and to translate ideologies into human aspirations.” And so, this work is more important than ever and worth celebrating always. 

I hope that this edition sparks your interest in global activities and that you consider joining us in this work to “humanize mankind.” 


Christina Quartararo signature



Christina Quartararo headshot

Christina Quartararo
Assistant Provost for Global Initiatives

In This Issue

Heidi Upton giving a presentation in from of projector screens

Professors’ Virtual Collaboration Cultivates a Global Community

Group of people posing for a photo

Global After Graduation Panel Offer International Career Paths

Neil Feinstein headshot

Collaborating on Customer Journey Maps across the Atlantic Ocean

Inside Montgoris Dining Hall with serving area of international cuisine

International Food Spotlights: a “Crêpe” Way to Celebrate

Students seated in a classroom watching projector screen

St. John’s Community Participates in Global Engagement

St. John's group of students posing for a photo at United Nations

United Nations Visit Impresses St. John’s Delegation

Save the Date

Please mark your calendars for this year’s Caribbean Writers Series event with author Dr. Myriam Chancy, on Monday, April 15, from 5-7 p.m., DAC 128 on the Queens campus.