International Studies & Programs

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Office for Education Abroad
Michigan State University
International Center
427 N. Shaw Lane Rm 109
East Lansing, MI 48824
Tel: 517-353-8920
Fax: 517-432-2082
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Back to Directory Opal Leeman Bartzis Executive Director Office for Education Abroad

105 International Center


Biography: As Executive Director, Opal provides leadership for the Office for Education Abroad, including the American Semester Program (ASP) for short-term inbound international students. She also directs the Global Youth Advancement Network (GYAN) and the Japan Center for Michigan Universities (JCMU), a consortium of Michigan’s public institutions. Opal chairs MSU’s Advisory Council on Education Abroad and the Faculty Learning Community for International Student Success and is a member of the Risk and Security Assessment Committee and International Strategic Enrollment Management Group. Prior to MSU, Opal held various positions over her 20 years at the Institute for Study Abroad, Butler University, most recently as Vice President for Academic Affairs and including three years as Resident Director in Ireland. She has served NAFSA in a variety of capacities, including Region VI Chair, Indiana State Representative, NAFSA Academy Coach, and currently as Co-Chair of the Peace, Justice & Citizen Diplomacy MIG. Active in the Forum on Education Abroad, Diversity Abroad, and the American Association of Collegiate Registrars and Admissions Officers (AACRAO), she is a frequent presenter and workshop trainer at international education conferences. Opal earned her doctorate in adult, higher and community education at Ball State University with her dissertation on the development of culturally sensitive instructional practices through student teaching abroad. She also completed doctoral certificates in college and university teaching and community college leadership, and she holds an MA in history and Honors BA in German from Butler University. Her research and publication areas are inclusive pedagogy, global teacher education, academic ethics across cultures, appreciative advising, and sustainability in education abroad. She studied abroad in Switzerland, Russia, and Lithuania, and spends as much time as possible with family in Greece.