Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

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Middlebury Institute
of International Studies at Monterey
MIIS Logo.png
Former names
Monterey Institute of International Studies
Type Private
Established 1955
Parent institution
Middlebury College
Vice-president Jeff Dayton-Johnson
Academic staff
70 full time; 70 adjunct
Postgraduates 790
Location Monterey, California, U.S.
Campus Urban
Colors blue      and white     
Website www.miis.edu

The Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (MIIS) (formerly known as the Monterey Institute of International Studies) is a graduate school of Middlebury College that offers master's degrees in international policy, environmental policy, international business, language teaching, and translation and interpretation. The Institute, which was founded in 1955, is located in Monterey, California, USA.[1]

The Institute has two graduate professional schools, the Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation, and Language Education and the Graduate School of International Policy and Management, and several related centers. The Institute awards Master of Arts (MA), Master of Business Administration (MBA), and Master of Public Administration (MPA) degrees, and numerous certificates across a variety of disciplines. The Institute's mission is to create an academic community dedicated to preparing the next generation of leaders in cross-cultural, multilingual environments. In 2011, the Institute produced more Fulbright Fellows per capita than any other graduate school in the US.[2] In 2015, Foreign Policy magazine ranked the Institute #21 on its list of "Top Master's Programs for a Policy Career in International Relations."[3]


Flags representing a few of the home countries of students at the Middlebury Institute

Founding and expansion[edit]

The Middlebury Institute was established in 1955 as the Monterey Institute for Foreign Studies.[1] In 1961, the school moved to its current downtown Monterey location, where it has since occupied 19 buildings that house two graduate schools, multiple centers, and numerous special programs. In 1997, the Institute became the first professional graduate school in the world to offer a master's degree in International Environmental Policy.[1]

Middlebury connection[edit]

In December 2005, Middlebury College and the Monterey Institute signed an affiliation agreement that established a formal relationship between the two institutions. Under that agreement, the Monterey Institute board of trustees was reconstituted to include 13 members, nine of them with Middlebury connections and four former members of the Monterey Institute board. In June 2010, Middlebury formalized its acquisition of the Institute, which was formally designated A Graduate School of Middlebury College.[4] The Monterey board of trustees was renamed the board of governors, and subsequently the board of overseers, with ultimate responsibility for the Institute residing with the Middlebury Board of Trustees.[5] On January 7, 2015, Middlebury announced that the Institute would become known as the Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. The name change was part of a general rebranding of Middlebury-affiliated institutions.[6]

Academic programs[edit]

Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation, and Language Education[edit]

The Graduate School of Translation, Interpretation, and Language Education (GSTILE) trains translators, interpreters (including conference interpreters), localization experts, and language teachers.

The Institute offers four translation and interpretation-related degree programs (M.A. in Translation, M.A. in Translation/Localization Management, M.A. in Translation and Interpretation, and M.A. in Conference Interpretation) in eight foreign languages (Arabic, French, German, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin Chinese, Russian, and Spanish). It also offers Portuguese as a language for the Translation and Localization Management program.

GSTILE also offers degrees for language teachers who will teach English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) and teach a foreign language.[7] Certificate programs are additionally offered in these areas as well as in CALL (Computer-Assisted Language Learning) and Language Program Administration.

Short-term language programs[edit]

The Middlebury Institute of International Studies also offers several non-degree programs, including intensive ESL programs year round; Summer Intensive Language Programs,Custom Language Services, English for Diplomats Programs, short term translation and interpretation courses, and international policy certificate programs. The Institute is the only school in the Western Hemisphere offering graduate degrees in conference interpretation and in translation and interpretation between English-Chinese, English-Japanese and English-Korean.

Graduate School of International Policy & Management[edit]

The Graduate School of International Policy & Management (GSIPM) offers both graduate degree and non-degree programs. Master's degrees are offered in disciplines including international business, international education management, international environment policy, international policy and development, international trade and economic diplomacy, nonproliferation and terrorism studies, and public administration.[8]

The following summarizes the academic purpose of each GSIPM program:

  • International Education Management trains professionals interested in working in study abroad, exchange programs, and international student affairs. Students learn about program management, education administration, and intercultural communication through their course work at MIIS and their international internship.
  • International Environmental Policy is the world's first international environmental policy program.[1] It trains top leaders in the environmental policy field from government, business, and non-governmental organizations. The MA program gives students the option to specialize in issues such as land and marine conservation, sustainable development, and energy and climate change.
  • International Policy and Development has master's degree and certificate programs that train students for careers in government, nonprofit organizations, or the private sector. The MA program offers several optional areas of concentration, including Environmental Sustainability; Gender, Power, and Identity; Human Rights and Advocacy; and Human Security.
  • International Trade and Economic Diplomacy trains trade and economic professionals with coursework in policy analysis, trade negotiations, communications, and team-building. The program takes place over 18-months and includes a semester in Washington, DC.
  • Nonproliferation and Terrorism Studies: one of the first graduate programs in the world to combine issues of counter-terrorism and nuclear nonproliferation, its curriculum provides students with the in-depth knowledge and specialized professional skills necessary to address modern critical security threats.
  • Master of Public Administration(MPA) is a professional post-graduate degree in Public Administration. The international MPA program prepares students to become effective leaders and managers. Through coursework and practical field experiences, students integrate theory, knowledge, and skills. They also develop the personal traits of effective leaders and managers including adaptability, resourcefulness and critical self-reflection.
  • MBA in Global Impact Management: MBA advanced professional degree programs leading to careers in international business. combines a globally focused curriculum in business management with coursework designed to build competencies in culture and languages. The curriculum prepares students to perform successfully in cross-cultural, cross-disciplinary and cross-sectoral teams and business environments. The Institute has been granting MBA degrees since 1982 and has been accredited by AACSB International since 2002.[9]

Immersive learning programs[edit]

Frontier Market Scouts Program (FMS)[edit]

The Middlebury Institute of International Studies, in partnership with Village Capital has founded and developed this program. The FMS program aims to train compassionate and capable young professionals into talent scouts and investment managers to serve as local entrepreneurs and social-minded investors in low-income and weak-capital regions of the world.[10] The Scouts provide business development assistance for local entrepreneurs and due diligence for investors with the goal of generating high-quality deal flows and supporting portfolio companies at a low cost.

Design, Partnering, Management & Innovation Program (DPMI)[edit]

DPMI is a leadership certificate in international development project management and social change. Over the intensive 3-week program, participants gain solid mastery of a wide variety of concepts, tools and technologies for the international development and social change field. DPMI is offered every January in California and Rwanda, and every May/June in Monterey, Washington, D.C., and Kenya. Since 2014 the DPMI Rwanda training has been hosted by Partners in Health (PIH), and integrates the completion of a client project. Starting in 2015, the DPMI Kenya training will be hosted by Locus the Point of International Development. Locus is an alternative development initiative dedicated to leveraging the best of local and the best of global through strategic partnerships, a focus on local solutions, integrated approaches to development and a shared framework for measurement.

Winter practica[edit]

During the January term, the Middlebury Institute regularly organizes opportunities for students to gain real world experience and practice their languages of study in-country. Currently, the Institute offers four programs in Chile, El Salvador, Nepal, and Peru.

Research centers and initiatives[edit]

Center for the Blue Economy[edit]

The mission of the Center for the Blue Economy is to educate the next generation of leaders to sustainably manage the world's oceans and coasts. Launched in fall 2011, the Center complements the International Environmental Policy program by offering coursework in Ocean and Coastal Resource Management, focusing on conservation biology, environmental and natural resource economics, energy policy, and sustainable development.[11] The center is home to the National Ocean Economics Program, which compiles, analyzes, and publishes economic data about changes and trends along the U.S. coast and in coastal waters.

James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS)[edit]

The James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS) is the largest nongovernmental organization in the world devoted to curbing the spread of weapons of mass destruction, and hosts five nonproliferation research programs.[12]

In October 2010, the Austrian Foreign Ministry selected the CNS as its partner in the establishment of the Vienna Center for Disarmament and Nonproliferation. In a public announcement, the Austrian government said that it selected CNS from a large number of candidates to manage and operate the new center "because of its distinguished record of leadership in the field and its shared vision" for the new center.[13]

In November 2016, CNS publicly called upon the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention to take on security issues related to what is known as "gene drive systems", which move genes over successive generations of organisms. Researchers were first able to replicate gene drive systems in a laboratory in 2009 using a genome editing technique called CRISPR-Cas9. An example of how gene drive systems could be used is in mosquitoes. Researchers can alter the genes so that female mosquitoes "express infertility, eventually reducing the spread of mosquito-born pathogens such as the Zika virus, malaria, dengue and yellow fever." The reason CNS asked the Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention to do a security assessment is because a risk analysis of the possible misuse of gene drive technology for malicious purposes has not yet been conducted.[14]

Monterey Terrorism Research & Education Program (MonTREP)[edit]

The Monterey Terrorism Research and Education Program (MonTREP) at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies is a research organization which conducts in-depth scholarly research, assesses policy options, and engages in public education on issues relating to terrorism and counterterrorism, extremist groups, regional studies of terrorism, and related aspects of international and homeland security.

Notable faculty[edit]

  • Jan Knippers Black: a prolific writer and long-time educator in the field of human rights. She sits on the board of Amnesty International USA and has been honored by multiple domestic and international rights organizations for her commitment to advocacy.
  • Avner Cohen: an Israeli-American writer, historian, and professor who is well known for his works on nuclear weapons in the Middle East. He authored the seminal work, Israel and the Bomb, which chronicled the Israeli nuclear program and was published in 1998.
  • Geoffrey Dabelko: an expert on security and the environment and the director of the Environmental Change and Security Program (ECSP) at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C.
  • Ferenc Dalnoki-Veress: a nuclear physicist and scientist-in-residence at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies. Member of the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (SNO) team whose work was awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Physics.
  • BG. (ret.) Russell D. Howard: Brigadier General (retired) Russell D. Howard is President of Howard's Global Solutions, Director of MonTrep, and an Adjunct Professor at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies. He is also a Senior Fellow at Joint Special Operations University, Senior Mentor for Development Alternatives Incorporated, Senior Advisor for the Singapore Home Team Academy, and on the Board of Advisers for Laser Shot Incorporated.
  • Beryl Levinger: a former senior official with CARE and Save the Children, and founder of the Peace Corps Fellows program.
  • Jeffrey Lewis: adjunct professor, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies, and a widely quoted expert on North Korea’s nuclear program.
  • William Potter: a world-renowned expert on nuclear non-proliferation. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Pacific Council on International Policy, and served for five years on the UN Secretary-General's Advisory Board on Disarmament Matters and the Board of Trustees of the UN Institute for Disarmament Research.
  • Moyara Ruehsen: an economist by trade, a certified anti-money laundering specialist (CAMS), and a certified financial crime specialist (CFCS) who has been teaching courses on international economics, financial crime, and terrorist financing for over seventeen years at the Institute.

Student life[edit]



International students make up more than 30 percent of the Institute's student body. In the 2014-15 academic year they came from more than 40 countries.

Student clubs[edit]


Beyond yoUrself In Language Development (BUILD) is a student-run organization that provides free low-level language classes in thirteen languages to the Middlebury Institute of International Studies (MIIS) community. Classes are taught by students enrolled in the TESOL and Teaching Foreign Language programs at MIIS.

Toastmasters International[edit]

MIIS Toastmasters is an on-campus chapter of Toastmasters International, a nonprofit educational organization that operates clubs worldwide for the purpose of helping members improve their communication, public speaking, and leadership skills. The club is run by MIIS students, and offers a forum for improving public speaking skills and mastering executive presence. The club is open to members of the Monterey community, and meets weekly.[15]

Notable alumni[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Kyriakou, Niko (26 August 2010). "Merger between Monterey Institute of International Studies and Middlebury College should pay off – financially and scholastically – for both.". East Meets West. Monterey County Weekly. Retrieved 31 January 2016. 
  2. ^ MIIS Students Land More Fulbright Awards Per Capita than Students at Stanford, Harvard, Yale, Princeton. Oct. 27, 2011
  3. ^ Maliniak, Daniel; Peterson, Susan; Powers, Ryan; Tierney, Michael J. "The Best International Relations Schools in the World". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 2016-10-07. 
  4. ^ Integrating the Monterey Institute of International Studies and Middlebury College
  5. ^ "Governance | Middlebury". Middlebury. Retrieved 2016-10-07. 
  6. ^ "Middlebury launches new brand identity system". Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey. 2015-01-07. Retrieved 2015-01-22. 
  7. ^ "The Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey (formerly Monterey Institute of International Studies) — Graduate School of Language and Educational Linguistics". Peacecorps.gov. Americorps.gov. Retrieved 2 February 2016. 
  8. ^ "International Affairs Grad School Guide" (PDF). Foreign Policy Association. Retrieved February 2, 2016. 
  9. ^ All Member Schools - AACSB
  10. ^ Ashoka (February 12, 2013). "Scouting the Sweet Spot Between Purpose and Profit". Forbes Magazine. Retrieved February 2, 2016. 
  11. ^ Center for the Blue Economy
  12. ^ "Monterey Institute of International Studies. James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies". Business Reference Services. Library of Congress. Retrieved 2 February 2016. 
  13. ^ CNS and Austrian Foreign Ministry launch Vienna Center for Disarmament and Non-Proliferation
  14. ^ "Center for Nonproliferation Studies calls on Biological and Toxin Weapons Convention to address biosecurity concerns". Homeland Preparedness News. 2016-11-29. Retrieved 2016-12-02. 
  15. ^ http://www.miis.edu/student-life/clubs/miischapter/node/33090
  16. ^ Interview with Katharine Daniels Kurz

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 36°35′59″N 121°53′49″W / 36.59972°N 121.89694°W / 36.59972; -121.89694