Whitworth Communications

For Immediate Release

May 15, 2006

For Fourth Consecutive Year, Whitworth MIM Students to Join Select Group
for U.N. Graduate Study Program in Geneva

Lisa Trefts and Sara Tanzi-Dunham, students in Whitworth's Master of International Management Program, were selected for academic internships in the 44th Graduate Study Programme at the United Nations, in Geneva, Switzerland. The students' appointments to the highly competitive program follow those of MIM graduates Randall Johanson, who participated in 2005, Jolene Piccolo, '04, and Mike Jazskowiak, '03.

Trefts and Tanzi-Dunham are two of 100 graduate students from more than 40 countries who will gather July 3-21 at the Palais des Nations to evaluate and make recommendations on global issues including human rights, the environment and economic development. During the program, participants will engage in issues of global importance and produce a working paper that can influence U.N. policies and programs.

The Information Service at Geneva organizes the annual graduate-study program as part of educational activities undertaken by the United Nations. The 2006 program, "The United Nations: A Time for Renewal," will include lectures by senior officials of the United Nations and other related agencies. Participants will also form working groups - under the guidance of U.N. experts - that will study specific issues. Each group will prepare a position paper that will be adopted by session members.

"The Whitworth community takes a deep and sincere pleasure in knowing that the college's students and graduates are using their talents in ways that contribute to the well-being of this increasingly complex and challenging world," says Mary Alberts, director of graduate studies in business at Whitworth. "The work that Lisa and Sara will do at the United Nations this summer will influence the economic, social and spiritual development of many generations to come. We couldn't be more grateful for their participation."

Trefts, a Spokane resident, is a trust assistant with Northwest Trustee and Management Services, where she analyzes clients' financial needs to provide asset management and conducts organizational analysis. Trefts holds a B.A. degree in business management from George Fox University and has studied at Daystar University, in Nairobi, Kenya. After graduating from the MIM program, Trefts plans to work in international microfinance.

"I am truly honored that I was selected for this program and that both the leadership of the School of Global Commerce & Management and the U.N. organization are supporting my pursuit of a global education," Trefts says. "The U.N. encourages diplomacy and open dialogue, with the goal of solving complex international problems. I intend to learn how people from all cultures view these international challenges and what methods they use to create solutions. Learning about the process of diplomacy will help prepare me to be an active participant in the global community."

Tanzi-Dunham, a native of Citta' di Castello, Italy, now resides in Spokane. She earned a B.A. degree in international business at Messiah College, in Grantham, Penn., and conducted studies in 10 European countries and Russia through the International Business Institute. Tanzi-Dunham worked in economic development with the Pennsylvania Angel Network and has served as a graduate-teaching assistant for Whitworth's new Introduction to Business and Management course. In April she won second place in the Inland Northwest Regional Business Plan competition for her "La Plaza" plan, a faith-based, earned-income venture. Tanzi-Dunham is fluent in Italian, English and Spanish, and is working to master Chinese.

"Participating in the program will help me gain a broader understanding of international organizations, not only in terms of what they do and how, but also of the people behind the scenes," Tanzi-Dunham says. "I look forward to observing and learning from a wide variety of international leaders."

Founded in 1993, Whitworth's MIM program is unique in the Northwest, with graduates taking leadership positions in a broad array of international business and service organizations throughout the U.S. and abroad. Whitworth's School of Global Commerce & Management will offer a new Master of Business Administration Degree Program beginning in fall 2006. The MBA program was established in response to growing demand from alumni, the business community and international partner institutions.

Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private, liberal arts college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (USA). The college enrolls 2,400 students in more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs.


Kyle Usrey, dean of the School of Global Commerce and Management, Whitworth College, (509) 777- 4721 or kusrey@whitworth.edu.

Mary Alberts, director, graduate studies in business, School of Global Commerce & Management, Whitworth College, (509) 777-4280 or malberts@whitworth.edu.

Julie Riddle, public information officer, Whitworth College, (509) 777-3729 or jriddle@whitworth.edu.

Related Links

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Master of International Management > Department Spotlight >

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