North­eastern University’s Dia­logue of Civ­i­liza­tions pro­gram has been rec­og­nized as the top Study Abroad pro­gram and awarded the 2011 Andrew Heiskell Award for Inno­va­tion in Inter­na­tional Edu­ca­tion by the Insti­tute of Inter­na­tional Education.

The award is the latest in a series of acco­lades rec­og­nizing Northeastern’s momentum as a global uni­ver­sity through the expan­sion of its expe­ri­en­tial learning pro­grams, anchored by a world-​​leading coop­er­a­tive edu­ca­tion program.

Dia­logue of Civ­i­liza­tions is a faculty-​​led pro­gram that con­nects North­eastern stu­dents with their peers around the world in dif­ferent national, cul­tural, polit­ical, and social envi­ron­ments, typ­i­cally for five weeks. The “dia­logue” in each country involves a series of meet­ings and dis­cus­sions between stu­dents and local gov­ern­ment, busi­ness, and com­mu­nity leaders on a range of topics.

Since its 2005 launch, par­tic­i­pa­tion rose from approx­i­mately 50 stu­dents in 3 pro­grams to 950 stu­dents in 48 pro­grams in 2010. The Uni­ver­sity expects more than 1,000 stu­dents to par­tic­i­pate in 50 pro­grams this year.

It is one of sev­eral expe­ri­en­tial learning pro­grams that have been rapidly expanding around the world; co-​​op and Northeastern’s other expe­ri­en­tial learning pro­grams now have stu­dents working, studying and con­ducting research in 160 cities and 69 coun­tries on all seven continents.

Pres­i­dent Joseph E. Aoun has led the global expan­sion of the University’s expe­ri­en­tial learning pro­grams. A recent in-​​depth look atNortheastern’s global expan­sion by The Chron­icle of Higher Edu­ca­tion noted the University’s suc­cess in glob­al­izing its pro­grams and campus by lever­aging the co-​​op pro­gram and increasing inter­na­tional enrollment.

Last fall, North­eastern received the 2010 Paul Simon Award for Campus Inter­na­tion­al­iza­tion from NAFSA: Asso­ci­a­tion of Inter­na­tional Edu­ca­tors. In addi­tion to on-​​campus ini­tia­tives, co-​​op and other global expe­ri­en­tial learning pro­grams, the University’s study abroad pro­grams were taken into con­sid­er­a­tion by the judges.

The win­ners of the 2011 Andrew Heiskell Awards were selected from the institute’s mem­ber­ship of more than 1,000 higher edu­ca­tion institutions.