MARQUETTE, Mich. — A student exchange partnership involving Northern Michigan University, Western Michigan University and two Brazilian institutions will come to an end after this semester.
Students Nichole Klingler and Cody Malnor of Marquette, Alejandro Macias Sevde of Chelsea, Katie Joseph of Grand Rapids and Danielle Pierre-Trettel of Negaunee represent the final exchange group from NMU. They will return from Brazil in June.
The partnership is supported by a grant from the Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education. Since the grant was initiated in 2008, NMU and WMU students have spent the winter semester in Brazil, studying Portuguese and completing an internship at a business or organization. In return, Brazilian students have come to the Michigan universities in the fall semester for a similar experience. The program was designed to promote socially, environmentally and economically sustainable entrepreneurship.
Over the grant’s lifetime, 16 NMU students—including those currently in Brazil—have participated. Fourteen Brazilian students have come to NMU.
“Those are nice numbers for an exchange that’s only gone four times,” said Susan Morgan of the NMU international programs office. “Other opportunities like this are available. Perhaps not all of them have $5,000 stipends, but the opportunities are there. It’s really a matter of continuing to find effective ways to communicate that to students.”