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University Relations

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Aug. 16, 2006
Contact: Alison Watkins, Graduate School and International Programs, (785) 864-4963.

Former dean, wife donate $25,000 to endow award for international educators at KU

LAWRENCE — George and Eleanor Woodyard of Lawrence have donated $25,000 to the Office of International Programs at the University of Kansas to endow the George and Eleanor Woodyard International Educator Award.

The award will recognize a faculty member for outstanding contributions to internationalization efforts at KU. Beginning in 2007, the endowed fund will provide a cash award of $1,000 to the winner.

George Woodyard joined the KU Department of Spanish and Portuguese in 1966. He held positions in the Graduate School and Academic Affairs. In 1989, he was named KU’s first dean of international studies. Woodyard created and strengthened exchange programs on the Lawrence campus and for the School of Medicine, and established many KU alumni chapters overseas.

Woodyard created an academic journal on Latin American theater in 1967 and continues to be editor into its 40th year. His work in the field has been recognized with prizes and awards in Miami, Bogotá, Caracas, Mexico, Buenos Aires and Cairo.

Woodyard chaired the Sister Cities Board and was involved in establishing both of Lawrence’s sister cities. He co-founded and chaired Kansas International, a local business group. He has sponsored programs with Rotary International and Heart-to-Heart. The Woodyards have hosted hundreds of international visitors in their home and have participated many times in study abroad programs in Mexico and Spain. George Woodyard received the national Phi Beta Delta Faculty Award in international education in 1997.

“The Woodyards’ gift will ensure that funding is available to continue to recognize outstanding faculty contributions to international education at KU,” said Diana Carlin, dean of the Graduate School and International Programs. “To have a faculty award named after the Woodyards is most appropriate since George Woodyard is an outstanding example of an international scholar, teacher and administrator. George and Eleanor have worked to internationalize the community as well as the university. We thank them for leaving this as their legacy to future generations of internationally minded faculty.”

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