Reimagining the field of international education through the vision of a Renaissance internationalist: the Minnesota case

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Book Chapter

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Josef A. Mestenhauser’s influence on the University of Minnesota’s comparative and international development education (CIDE) program is described by a graduate of the doctoral program and a colleague. The master’s program, approved in 1986, was co-founded by three scholars mentored by Mestenhauser who then recruited him to teach in the program due to his innovative thinking, interdisciplinary approach, global reputation grounded in practice, and commitment to developing talent and uplifting diverse individuals. The program became distinctive with its emphasis on theory–practice integration and inclusion of both development and intercultural studies. Interviews with a university president emeritus and alumni in Central Asia and Minnesota, and reflections by the authors, illustrate how Mestenhauser transformed Minnesota’s program into a global powerhouse that educated a generation of practitioners and scholars.