11/29/16 (written by Rita Kuckertz) — On Monday, November 14, 2016, the University of San Diego (USD) celebrated national International Education Week by hosting a luncheon to honor all USD faculty and staff who were nominated by their students and colleagues to receive the 2016 International Impact Award. USD’s Office of International Affairs awards this honor on an annual basis to USD faculty and staff who have made significant contributions to USD’s international education goals through their work to promote global education and understanding.
A panel of five international faculty members selected the award recipients from a pool of campus nominations. This year, of the eleven faculty and staff that were nominated, two faculty members were the recipients of the 2016 award— Justice in Mexico’s Dr. David Shirk and Dr. James Bolender (Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry).
Dr. Shirk, Associate Professor of Political Science and International Relations, has demonstrated a profound commitment to international education and collaboration, particularly in his role as the Director of USD’s Justice in Mexico program. Dr. Shirk first created the Justice in Mexico project in 2001 at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) and transitioned the program to USD in 2005. As such, this year marks the fifteen-year anniversary of Dr. Shirk’s international work through Justice in Mexico.
Dr. David Shirk receives this honor just as he publishes Justice in Mexico’s landmark study on operators of the Mexican judicial system, along with USD alumna Nancy Cortés and Justice in Mexico Program Coordinator Octavio Rodríguez. The 2016 Justiciabarómetro study examined judicial sector operators’ self-reported perspectives on Mexico’s new system of justice and their role in its operation.
Dr. Shirk continues his international work with a multi-million dollar grant awarded to him through the U.S. Department of State’s International Bureau of Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL). This grant funds Justice in Mexico’s Oral-Adversarial Skill Building Immersion Seminar (OASIS), a program in collaboration with the National Autonomous University of Mexico (Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, UNAM) Law School that provides international courses on litigation skills for UNAM Law School faculty and students.