Irene Scott receives inaugural DEI award from NAFSA

Published on 3/4/2022 3:19:09 PM
By Alice Liang '24

The Association of International Educators, or NAFSA, granted its inaugural Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in International Education Award for Region III to Irene Scott,  program manager for Education Abroad at Texas A&M University. The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in International Education Award recognizes an international education professional in the region whose work promotes diversity, inclusive practices and creates and/or advances equitable systems at their institution or in the field of international education.

Scott was recognized for her commitment to equity and spearheading efforts to raise awareness of underrepresented student populations in education abroad. She currently serves on the NAFSA Education Abroad Knowledge Community leadership team and co-chairs the Diversity and Inclusion in Education Abroad subcommittee. Additionally, Scott has contributed to the Diversity Abroad Advisor Manual: Access for Disabilities Abroad and has collaborated with colleagues across the country on presentations for NAFSA, Mobility International USA, and the Association on Higher Education and Disability.
“When reflecting on DEI work done over the years, a few themes came to mind – the importance of starting somewhere, being consistent, and collaborating with others to achieve a sustainable impact,” Scott said. “At Texas A&M Education Abroad, much of our efforts have been to cultivate a shared commitment within the office and across campus. DEI work calls for involvement from everyone.”

Prior to joining Education Abroad at Texas A&M in 2007, Scott received an MA in college student personnel from Bowling Green State University. Integrating her student affairs background, she implemented a departmental diversity committee, helped to refine internal processes, and coordinated accommodations for program participants with disabilities.

"Irene has been critical to pushing Education Abroad forward by making our programs more accessible and equitable, said Holly Hudson, associate vice president for Global Engagement. “Her work is invaluable to our mission of providing 'meaningful, diverse, and inclusive international experiences' for all Texas A&M students."

Scott extended special thanks to the NAFSA Region III Leadership Team and colleagues who have contributed to her consideration for the award.

“It is an honor to have been selected to receive this recognition,” Scott said. “So many individuals have contributed to this moment. [There is] much appreciation for the continued collaboration, exchange of resources, and support of colleagues across networks.”