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17 students selected as MISTI ambassadors

Seventeen undergraduate and graduate students have been selected to serve as ambassadors for the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI) for 2002-03.

Students who have participated in one of MISTI's six internship programs and who have demonstrated an outstanding contribution and commitment to international learning at MIT can gain membership in the new MISTI Ambassador Program.

"They're from exciting and diverse backgrounds and have had remarkable experiences creating knowledge in different cultures," said Bernd Widdig, co-founder of the MISTI Ambassador Program and associate director of MISTI.

In addition to representing MISTI to the MIT community and the wider public, the group will attend a series of dinners at which MIT faculty or distinguished scholars will present work on current international issues. More importantly, the ambassadors will provide a valuable student role in developing several new MISTI initiatives that will further international education at MIT.

Open to all MIT students, a typical MISTI experience begins with an immersion in culture and language on campus and concludes with an intensive professional internship abroad, lasting anywhere from six weeks to a year. Interns work in their area of technical expertise; all travel and living expenses are paid. MISTI currently has internship opportunities available in China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan and Singapore.

To learn more about MISTI and the Ambassador Program, e-mail Widdig at


Sophomores - Virginia Corless, physics; Jean Lu, management.

Juniors - Diana Cheng, mathematics; Ana Ramos, materials science and engineering; Salvatore Scaturro, civil and environmental engineering; and Kushan Surana and Marek Polonski, electrical engineering and computer science (EECS).

Seniors - Danielle Guez, neuroscience; Gergana Bounova, aeronautics/astronautics and mathematics; Jeffrey Leblanc, mathematics; and Matthew Bilotti, Christine Robson and Madleina Scheidegger, EECS.

Graduate students - Kathryn Kaminski, operations research; Xiaomin Mou, health sciences and technology; and Shin-Ning Duh and Joyce Wu, EECS.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on December 4, 2002.

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