June 8, 2015Eduardo Contreras, Jr., has been appointed Director of Studies Abroad for the University of Portland, announced Thomas G. Greene, Provost and Professor of Education. Contreras will assume his responsibilities on July 1, 2015.
Contreras comes from Harvard University, where he recently completed his Doctor of Education degree. He holds an Ed.M. in Higher Education from the Graduate School of Education at Harvard, an M.A. in Asian Cultures and Languages, and a B.A. in History (with high honors) from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a member of the Phi Beta Kappa Society and will have a concurrent faculty appointment in the School of Education.
Contreras recently taught in the Higher Education Institutes at Harvard, serving as the Study Abroad Program Consultant in the Harvard Europe Program, and providing mentorship in the Office of Minority Education at MIT. Before moving to Massachusetts for graduate studies, he was a program coordinator in the Study Abroad Office, international advisor in the Center for Global Educational Opportunities, and a research associate in the South Asia Institute, all at University of Texas at Austin.
Fluent in Spanish, Contreras can also speak, read, and write in Hindi/Urdu, and read and write in Sanskrit. He is the author of numerous articles and chapters on international education and he has also offered many presentations and invited lectures on the topic. He recently taught a course at the Harvard Graduate School of Education called: Internationalizing Higher Education: Possibilities, Perils, and Promises.
Contreras replaces Rev. Art Wheeler, C.S.C., who served as study aboard director for 20 years and is returning to the history faculty on a full-time basis.
“Contreras' expertise in international education and his experience in studies abroad will contribute to the advancement of UP's nationally recognized and ranked studies abroad program,” says Greene.
For the past 14 years, University of Portland has ranked in the top 15 nationally among its peer institutions in students studying abroad for a long-term duration, according to the “Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange.”
The University’s flagship and year-long program in Salzburg, Austria recently celebrated its 50th anniversary. Beyond the Salzburg program, the University offers multiple opportunities for students to explore the world and immerse themselves in new cultures and experiences through academic programs abroad. Students have the opportunity to participate in programs that touch all corners of the globe, including University programs in England, Australia, Japan, Italy, Chile, Spain and Ireland and 25 locations worldwide through IES (Institute for the International Education of Students).