Martin School of International Studies

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The Martin School of International Studies at the University of Idaho was created for the purpose of looking into the reasons for war and international disputes, and searching for peaceful solutions to these conflicts. The school works with the University of Idaho's Martin Institute, which preceded the Martin School of International Studies, not only seeks to further the cause of peace within the university, but without as well, primarily through annual Martin Forums it sponsors.


The Martin Institute was founded at the University of Idaho in 1979 as the Martin Institute of Human Behavior. Boyd A. and Grace C.S. Martin are the institute founders. Boyd Martin was raised in Cottonwood, Idaho, and received his bachelor's degree from University of Idaho in 1936. He later earned a doctorate from Stanford University. His wife, Grace, grew up in Spokane, Washington, and graduated from University of California, Los Angeles after spending time at Washington State University. The couple were married in December 1933. With Hitler's accession to power and the prospect of a second world war looming, the Martins discussed the idea of establishing a program which would study the causes of war, and support lasting peace. To this end, they decided to place their life savings of $800 in a fund to support what would later become the Martin Institute.

Martin Forum[edit]

The Martin Forum brings experts from around the world to University of Idaho each year to share their knowledge with students, faculty and the community. Past forum topics have included the Iraq War, the United States and the United Nations, peace and democracy in the Francophone world and in Africa, the Darfur conflict, global health policy, and international development. Past speakers have include Iraq War photographer Ashley Gilbertson, Rajiv Chandrasekaran of The Washington Post, and Irish consul-general Emer Deane.


The Martin School of International Studies, in conjunction with the Martin Institute, oversees an international studies major and minor at the University of Idaho. The institute provides funding and leadership for the school. The program provides learners with courses in the language, history and culture of a specific region and first-hand exposure through time studying abroad. Students in this discipline focus their research on one of three emphases: International Relations, Global Resources and Development, or International Business and Economics. Other avenues for personal and career development are also encouraged, such as involvement in the Model United Nations, the Martin Speaker Series and Spotlight Seminars, the International Affairs Club and internships provided by the school and institute.