When students graduate from West Virginia University, they never truly leave their alma mater behind. They constantly serve as ambassadors; always proudly carrying the Flying WV. That Mountaineer pride is felt all over the world, thanks to the efforts of international graduates.

WVU is harnessing the power of its alumni living abroad. The University recently helped to officially launch the Shanghai Chapter of the WVU Alumni Association to bring graduates together and provide opportunities for them to become more involved in the life of WVU.

“Our global footprint is growing, and during the next few years we plan to further extend that footprint through student recruitment and other activities,” said Jose “Zito” Sartarelli, WVU’s Chief Global Officer and Milan Puskar Dean of the College of Business & Economics.

“The addition of these international alumni chapters provides us not only with opportunities to engage alumni, but also reach out to prospective students who bring unique perspectives and cultural experiences to our campus. Our alumni living abroad provide us with tremendous resources in helping us achieve our strategic initiatives, both on and off campus.”

In addition to recruiting students, international graduates assist in engaging fellow alumni and providing opportunities for internships, professional networking, alumni activities and travel abroad.

“WVU is proud to welcome our latest alumni chapter, and our first chapter formed in China,” said David Stewart, Associate Vice President for International Student Affairs and Global Services. “We appreciate all the efforts of Madame Chang and our loyal alumni in Shanghai, as well as our faculty and staff in the School of Business and Economics.”

While WVU’s campus may be thousands of miles away, their pride in their University is unwavering.

“Our international graduates are extremely passionate about their alma mater,” said Steve Douglas, president & CEO, WVU Alumni Association. “These chapters provide us with an opportunity to connect these Mountaineers – no matter where they live. We look forward to continuing to work with Dean Sartarelli and WVU’s Office of International Student Affairs and Global Services to form chapters around the world so that we can keep them engaged in the life of WVU.”
WVU currently has more than 1,500 international students from more than 100 countries, with a goal of doubling those numbers within the next 10 years. The Shanghai Chapter joins three other international chapters, including Bangkok, Tokyo and Malaysia chapters.

“We plan to keep this momentum going in the coming year by adding new chapters in key areas around the world,” added Sartarelli. “More and more of our students and graduates are looking for professional opportunities abroad, so having a strong international network of alumni in place will enable us to make that happen.”



CONTACT: Tara Curtis, WVU Alumni Association
304.293.0972, tecurtis@mail.wvu.edu

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