International Studies head: ‘Bring the world closer to OU’

The International Studies Program held its second monthly current events forum Tuesday, Nov. 12 at noon in the Oakland Room.

The presentation, Snapshots of China, was presented by Alan Epstein, the current acting director of the ISP.

The theme of the presentation was that of the “economic rebalancing” of China. Epstein discussed various politics in China, its environmental crisis, social media, efforts to rebalance the economy and more.

“The main goal of the ISP is to bring the world closer to Oakland students,” Epstein said. “We like to raise awareness about global issues.”

Last month’s presentation covered political events in Egypt and was presented by Basma El Bathy, according to Epstein. More than 90 people attended.

There will be a Russia and Eastern Europe presentation Tuesday, Dec. 3 from noon to 1 p.m. in Gold Room C, presented by a group of OU professors.

 “Almost all of our instructors are natives to those regions or were people who have spent lots of time in those regions,” Epstein said.

Due to this, Epstein said he feels they and the ISP can teach students things they may not normally know.


Connecting students

“Even though we live in this globalized age we find that a lot of students don’t know a lot about the world, and that’s sort of what we specialize in,” Epstein said. “People here affect the world and in turn the world affects the people here.”

Joey Tinnion, a junior history major, was one of the students who attended the China presentation on Tuesday.

“It actually is pretty cool,” Tinnion said.

Tinnion said the presentation was offered as extra credit for a class and is the first one he has attended so far. He said he is interested in attending next month’s presentation as well, however.

“I like learning about other places in the world,” Tinnion said. “It’s a benefit to everybody.”

The ISP puts out many courses, events, film showings and talks, according to Epstein.

Epstein also encouraged anyone who has an international program or activity to email him so that he can make an announcement to the rest of the student population.

“We want to get the student population as involved as possible,” Epstein said.


Upcoming events

Before beginning his presentation, Epstein announced upcoming events and encouraged students to attend.

There will be future programs covering the Japan, Latin America, Africa and India, among other places.

“We think it’s a really important feature of university and we’re trying to stimulate interest,” Epstein said.

The China Club will also hold a movie showing Friday, Nov. 15 from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Dodge Hall of Engineering. The movie is a popular Taiwanese film called “Cape No. 7” and will be shown in room 400, according to Epstein. There will be free food as well.

The ISP will be holding many more events in the winter semester.

“You’re welcome to come any time,” Epstein said. “We’d love to have you.”

For more information and events visit or email [email protected]