DeFleur honored for global education vision, leadership
BINGHAMTON, NY -- Lois B. DeFleur, president of Binghamton University, State University of New York, was honored as a visionary and an innovator in educating students for a global age with the 2007 Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education on Tuesday, Sept. 25.
“I am deeply honored to accept the Harold W. McGraw, Jr. Prize in Education on behalf of myself and Binghamton University,” said DeFleur. “We are proud to be on the cutting edge of global education, which is so important to our students and our nation.”
DeFleur understands “that a well-rounded education is the new currency of today’s global economy and [has] demonstrated a true commitment to helping young people develop the skill sets needed to succeed,” said Harold McGraw III, chairman, president and chief executive officer of The McGraw-Hill Companies.
DeFleur has overseen the implementation of an innovative, nationally recognized general education program that includes global studies and her leadership has advanced groundbreaking programs that encourage language education across the curriculum and dual-diploma programs with other universities.
“We’re proud of the many national awards we’ve won,” DeFleur said. “Our programs are innovative and comprehensive — from inside the classroom to out of the classroom, from the welcome banner on campus to our international arts programs.”
Binghamton also brings the world to campus with students from more than 100 nations, international festivals, its dual-diploma program with four Turkish universities and the University Award for Excellence in International Activities. “These things help us keep our ‘eyes on the prize,’” said DeFleur. “That prize is global awareness, global respect and global competence.”
The McGraw Prize annually recognizes three outstanding individuals who have dedicated themselves to enhancing learning and whose contributions are making a difference. Winners, chosen by a distinguished panel of judges from the education community, receive a gift of $25,000 and a bronze sculpture. Reynauld Smith, an American history teacher in Washington, D.C., and Vivien Stewart, vice president for education of the Asia Society, were also honored this year.
With the gift, DeFleur has established the Lois B. DeFleur International Innovation Fund to support University initiatives such as the recent international co-production of “West Side Story” by Binghamton and DUOC Universidad Católica in Chile.
“The success of our students and the competitiveness of our nation are dependent upon new and creative thinking by educators,” said McGraw. “The 2007 McGraw Prize honorees, like those who have gone before them, are focused on the challenges the next generation will be facing, and how to best help them learn and achieve.”
DeFleur joins past honorees including former first lady and founder of the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy, Barbara Bush, former U.S. secretaries of education Richard Riley and Rod Paige and Wendy Kopp, chief executive office and founder of Teach for America.