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International education shines at STAR awards

The winners of the inaugual A. Noam Chomsky Global Connections Awards have been announced by the Society of Transnational Academic Researchers Scholars Network.

The inaugual A. Noam Chomsky Global Connections Awards recognised seven winners. Photo: STAR

"This award is more than just an accolade"

The new awards recognise scholars for distinctive contributions to transnational research that “demonstrates the very best of scholarly collaboration among scholars around the world”, Anthony C. Ogden, vice president of International Learning and Engagement for the STAR Scholars Network and chair of the 2020 awards committee highlighted.

“The works of these scholars are intellectually breathtaking”

Among the seven winners of the 2020 awards were a number scholars of international education.

Elspeth Jones was awarded the headline North Star Medal of Lifetime Achievement award, while Deakin University’s Ly Tran won the Shining Star Achievement in Research Award and associate editor at Journal of International Students Jasper Kun-Ting Hsieh won the Rising Star Emerging Scholar Certificate.

Assistant professor of sociology at Hong Kong Baptist University Yao-Tai Li – whose work focuses on migration decision, integration, social mobility, including Chinese migrant workers integration – was also awarded the Rising Star Emerging Scholar Certificate.

“The works of these scholars are intellectually breathtaking,” said Uttam Gaulee, current president of STAR, in an interview after the awards were announced.

“I applaud them for their audacity and boldness in advancing global social mobility. What a powerful addition to the positive force that is shaping a more humane and just world.”

“Let me say a hearty congratulations to all of our recipients that we’ve recognised, as well as the many many more who were nominated. Collectively [they] do such important work to enhance international research,” Ogden added.

“This award is more than just an accolade,” Ly Tran, who was born in Vietnam, said. “It has a special meaning to me as it was named after Professor Noam Chomsky and it honours transnational human connections.”

Chomsky was a leading  American intellectuals in the movement against the Vietnam war, and the broader movement “helped influence the public debate and lead to the withdrawal of the American troops from Vietnam”, she continued.

“I was born and grew up in Quảng Trị, a small town in Central Vietnam near the 17th parallel, which divided the country into two parts during the Vietnam war.

“As part of a generation of Vietnamese born in 1975, the year when the war ended and the country was reunited, I am deeply indebted to the voices of leading scholars like Professor Chomsky, for the privilege of growing up and going to school without bomb raids, helicopter sounds or screaming like what my sister and brother had gone through,” Tran noted.

“This award recognises transnational research and celebrates global connections. My journey as an international student and then an international academic in an Australian university has been around moving across borders for education and for work, in partnership with students, researchers and professionals in transnational contexts.

“I have learnt enormously from these transnational encounters and these people-to-people connections and people-to-people empathy have strongly shaped the nature, directions and aspirations of my research, teaching and learning.”

The full list of winners are here.

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