The International Institute has the ability to facilitate virtual meetings in Graduate School USA’s Online Learning Department’s in-house studio and certain classrooms. The online videoconferences are conducted by utilizing Adobe Connect software. This flash-based tool runs video smoothly, and allows the presenter to display a PowerPoint presentation alongside the video broadcast. There are several microphones in the studio to enhance the sound quality. Graduate School USA’s Distance Education Technology Specialist, who oversees the virtual opening, can also provide a highly customizable backgrounds that could include various images and/or logos.
In addition to hosting project openings, the virtual studio frequently connects IVLP participants with resources outside the greater capital area. These online meetings are a cost-effective way to facilitate connections and learning from communities that are not included in the participants’ itinerary.
Another valuable feature offered by the studio are pictures of the event, as well as recordings of the meeting. The studio can webcast meetings live using Adobe® Connect™, Blackboard Collaborate™, or WebEx® and is used for hosting webinars, recording online learning sessions, video commercials, etc. We regularly conduct virtual project openings in conjunction with CBMs across the country.
Some examples include:
We launched a project with 10 participants from the Pacific Islands entitled “Obesity, Nutrition, and Non-Communicable Diseases.” The participants were in Honolulu, Hawaii at the Pacific & Asian Affairs Council. The welcome and introduction to the program was conducted via teleconference. The Department of State Program Officer and one of our programming teams joined the group from Washington, DC.
We conducted a virtual project opening in conjunction with The World Affairs Council of Seattle for a group of seven English language professors from Venezuela.