After an extensive national search, Lamar University has announced the appointment of Jeffrey Palis as the university’s first director of study abroad. Palis joined the university’s administrative staff Sept. 2.

“Study abroad is an important component of our university’s strategic plan and an area of emphasis that greatly enriches the student experience,” said Provost Steve Doblin. “We are very pleased to have Dr. Palis as director of Study Abroad. Through his leadership we look forward to continued growth of our program offerings and participation.”

Palis holds a doctorate in curriculum studies with a concentration in multicultural/international studies from Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, Ga. He holds a master’s in international studies with concentrations in international trade and German from East Carolina University, Greenville, N.C., and a bachelor’s in geography with a minor in psychology from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Palis’ research interests include cosmopolitanism and world citizenship, exile and borderland pedagogy, autobiographical and intercultural narrative inquiry, internationalization of higher education, and multicultural education.

Palis joins Lamar University after 11 years at Georgia Southern, where he most recently served as the associate director of international studies in the Center for International Studies.

Palis has served in a variety of positions related to his new role at Lamar, to include interim director of International Studies and Administrative Coordinator of Study Abroad and Exchange Programs at GSU, a trade assistant intern at the American Chamber of Commerce in Vienna, Austria, and the internship coordinator and education specialist in the Office of Cooperative Education at East Carolina.  He has experience designing, marketing, leading and evaluating study abroad programs, managing departmental and program budgets, creating legal and risk management guidelines, developing and coordinating exchange programs, and setting, implementing, and communicating campus internationalization initiatives.

As the principal investigator of a U.S. Department of Education grant, he coordinated student exchanges in Canada and Mexico, and he has professional experience in many of the world’s cities, to include Beijing, London and Paris. He has led study abroad programs in Poland, the Czech Republic and Latvia (which he visited as a Fulbright Scholar while finishing his dissertation).  In addition, Palis has close professional ties in numerous other countries, including Bosnia-Herzegovina, Botswana, Ireland and Japan.