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 Around the World 
   March 2014 
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Don't Forget!
May 17th, ASSIST 45th Anniversary Gala, Düsseldorf

June 30th, Annual Fund Deadline

August 13-17, Scholar Orientation 

Ask the President
Question: Bob, How many countries are represented in 
our alumni pool?

Bob's reply: 50 countries 
(click to see the list) 

Do you have a question 
for the President? 
 Click  here to submit one.

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ASSIST Mission
ASSIST creates life-changing opportunities for outstanding international scholars to attend and contribute to the finest American independent secondary schools to promote mutual understanding, cultural interchange, and global citizenship.  
Class of 2013/14 

*  161 Scholars from  
    20 countries

88 Member Schools

*  Founded 1969

4,300+ Alumni from 
    50 countries 

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Are You a Global Citizen?

"You have to take ownership and leadership of tomorrow. For that to be possible, you have to strengthen your capacity and widen your vision as a global citizen."   - United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Jumping Over Cultural Divides
ASSIST has played a formative role in strengthening the capacity of our 4,300 alumni from 50 countries to respond to the challenge that
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issues above.  In this article, we begin to define global citizenship and have asked three members of the ASSIST family to offer their perspectives on what it means to be a "global citizen.''

Please click on the videos below to hear from Tao Tao '02 and Johannes Reck '02, Germany, Woodberry Forest School (VA), Ioana Niculcea '01, Romania, Mercersberg Academy (PA), and Willy MacMullen, Headmaster, The Taft School (CT).


Johannes Reck '02 and Tao Tao '02 
Johannes Reck '02 and Tao Ta0 '02
Ioana Niculcea '01, Romania 
Ioana Niculcea '01 
Willy MacMullen, Headmaster, The Taft School 
Willy MacMullen, Headmaster, The Taft School
Define Global Citizenship  
  • Being a global citizen is a choice and a way of thinking across cultures and national boundaries achieved, in part, through formative life experiencesHands Around the World
  • A self-awareness and an awareness of one's own culture and the cultural identity of others is a necessary attribute
  • World citizenship requires knowledge and values along with the skills needed to act responsibly and confidently in making a pro-active and positive difference in the world.

Help us build this definition.  

Please send your ideas to meg@assist-inc.org.



In framing this definition, ASSIST benefited from the sound thinking of the following agencies. The articles noted contain guiding thoughts for our member schools: UNESCO, Education for 'Global Citizenship': A Framework for Discussion; OXFAM, Education for Global Citizenship - A Guide for Schools; and Inside Higher Education, Global Citizenship: What Are We Talking About and Why Does it Matter, March 2012, Kris Olds 

How in the World Did You Discover ASSIST? 
For this Alum, it all started with a torn piece of paper

In January 2014, we received the following letter from Hungarian alumnus László Berencei '11:
Dear fellow members of the ASSIST family!

I am truly sorry for not being able to participate at tonight's event. I am currently in London, at university. Since attendance is strictly monitored during term time, I am unfortunately unable to be with all of you.

Despite my absence I would like to share all the things that happened to me since my return to home after my ASSIST year with you. I would also like to hear your stories and thank ASSIST once again for what I received and gained.


Currently I am undertaking the second year of my undergraduate studies at University College London, where I learn Chemistry with Mathematics. I needed a lot of preparation to be accepted by one of the top universities in the world and a major part of that was my year abroad at Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School in Georgia, United States. Obviously, I improved my English a lot while there, but the effect of this year was far greater than that. Unlike in Hungarian schools, I was able to concentrate on a small number of subjects only (mostly my favourite ones) and the AP courses helped learn the terminology of Chemistry and Physics which proved invaluable since my arrival in the UK. It helped me getting accepted to 4 of the very best universities in the United Kingdom as well as in the world and I could also start my studies without the initial difficulties foreign students often experience. People still often note my "American accent" which makes me very proud.


The boarding school lifestyle had also been previously unknown to me, and it was a good preparation for my college life abroad, too. My choices of universities were also influenced by my ASSIST year. UCL claims to be a "global university" and has a reputation of having a greatly international environment which was one of its most attractive characteristics to me after I had experienced my American school's diverse and very tolerant community. Many ASSIST students describe their year abroad as a life changing experience and I couldn't agree with this more myself.



Laszlo paper v2

Let me finish my letter with our personal story of how my family first heard about ASSIST. During a business trip my mother met a young colleague of hers. Despite their numerous hours of hard work they got to know each other as well. I remember my mother telling me that her colleague, Attila Náfrádi, started every other sentence with something along the lines of "when I was in Denver...". It was obvious that something very influential happened to this young man in Denver, Colorado. As you can probably guess, Attila is an ASSIST scholar as well. He was part of one of the first people from Hungary to be part of this amazing program. He took a small piece of paper and scribbled down ASSIST's web address on it. A few years later I became an ASSIST scholar myself. This piece of paper is still kept as some kind of a relic in our home. When mom mentioned it to him, Attila was really surprised  by the unexpectedly long life of his handwritten note. I think this is a proof of the power of our acts, even if we are not aware them. It also suggests that ASSIST scholars should act as ambassadors of ASSIST, in any way they can. I hope good ideas to help ASSIST will occur to all of us along the way.


Thank You ASSIST, Thank you, Attila!


László Berencei '11

Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School (GA) 

ASSIST Volunteers
Featuring J. Wood "Woody" Rutter: Role Model, Source of Inspiration, Valued Director, Generous Donor, and Beloved Friend to Many

Woody Rutter at Parliament Woody Rutter holds a special place in the hearts and minds of many for his gentle and guiding touch, his tireless service to ASSIST, and his belief that people have the power to build their lives and to be catalysts for positive change in the lives of others. In October 2013, the ASSIST Board recognized Woody for his 30 years of volunteer service as a Director.

Woody's honors continued to be conferred in January 2014 in Lithuania. First, at a special visit to the Seimas (the Lithuanian Parliament), Woody and Marty Milne, ASSIST VP for School and Family Relations, were recognized by the Vice President & Secretary General for opening doors of opportunity to the country's deserving young scholars (110 since 1993).  


Next, honors were bestowed at a reception hosted by the Kazickas Family Foundation in Vilnius to celebrate both the 10th anniversary of the Foundation's sponsorship of ASSIST Scholars and ASSIST's 18 years in the country. Fifty alumni and friends of ASSIST gathered along with representatives of the Lithuanian government, the American embassy, and the Lithuanian business community. Woody received a bronze medallion from former Lithuanian President Valdas Adamkus and a silver medal from the Kazickas Family Foundation for his work with ASSIST and for Lithuania.


In his volunteer work for ASSIST over 30 years, Woody has interviewed hundreds of student candidates. He was on one of the first ASSIST teams to interview in Lithuania after the country proclaimed independence in 1990. During his annual visits there over the years, he has observed a growing and more vibrant spirit appearing from behind the Communist shadow - "it's a happier spirit now," Woody says, "with an increasing shift toward a more Western mindset." Leaders believe that encouraging more young people to remain in the country after their education is critical. ASSIST's requirement for Scholars to return and to complete high school in their home countries encourages that.


"Given the pride Lithuanians take in education, the ASSIST candidates have remained strong right from the start," reports Woody. In January at Vilnius University (founded in 1579), Woody teamed up with Marty Milne and Aukse Jurkute '93 to interview 39 finalists. "Each," Woody reports, "loves America" and dreams that the ASSIST experience might be theirs.

Woody (a sponsor of 10 Lithuanian Scholars) and a group of Lithuanian ASSIST alumni are trying to help make those dreams come true. A matching fundraising challenge has been offered by Mindaugas Juozaitis '94, already the sponsor of three ASSIST Scholars. If alumni and alumni parents rise to the challenge, they can support two Lithuanian Scholars in 2014/15. We hope that this will serve as a model and will inspire alumni in other countries to do likewise.


We have invited Lithuanian alumni and alumni parents to contribute to the matching gift campaign. Please follow the link below to read more about the opportunity - and to make a generous gift!




Woody can't "imagine not volunteering." His parents led by example. Woody remembers their impressing on him at a very young age that "we've been blessed and we need to give back."   

Woody Rutter and the Thumbs Up programAdd a description  

In addition to his work in Lithuania, Woody has reached out in thoughtful, caring ways throughout his career in independent schools and in his personal life. After retiring as Headmaster of Beaufort Academy, SC, Woody was drawn to an organization, Thumbs Up, in Beaufort that supports an under-served portion of the population (18 students - kindergarten through 4th grade). Through the support of volunteers during the school year and summer months, students learn how to study, respect adults, and support one another - all resulting in improved success in school and staying at grade level. 


ASSIST Alumni Seek to Fund Next Generation
Campaigns Launched in Hungary and Lithuania
Vilnius Reception

Alumni and alumni parents in Hungary and Lithuania, working with ASSIST staff and Board members, announced the launch of campaigns aimed at funding ASSIST Scholars for the 2014/15 academic year and beyond! 

Vilnius, Lithuania


On Saturday, January 25, the Kazickas Family hosted a large gathering of ASSIST alumni and alumni parents, American diplomats, members of the Lithuanian government, and Lithuanian business leaders at an enjoyable reception following this year's interviews.

Vilnius Reception    

A central purpose of the evening was to launch a new fundraising campaign designed to sponsor current and future generations of Lithuanian ASSIST Scholars.


Currently, the Kazickas Family Foundation sponsors three ASSIST Scholars every year, provided ASSIST can secure donations to sponsor three additional students. Mindaugas Juozaitis '94, who has already sponsored three ASSIST Scholars in the past, will fully sponsor another ASSIST Scholar for the 2014/15 academic year - if Lithuanian alumni and alumni families can raise a second sponsorship to match his gift. When successful, this ensures funding five of the six Lithuanian students for 2014/15.


For more news on this initiative, and to make a gift, please follow this link:


Budapest, Hungary

A week earlier, and 830 miles to the southeast, Hungarian alumni and alumni parents were also gathering to celebrate their ties with ASSIST and with one another. A large gathering enjoyed a delicious dinner and heard from alumni, alumni parents and Jack Eidam, an ASSIST Board member, about the new fundraising initiative.

Hungary Reception


The objective is to sponsor a Hungarian ASSIST Scholar in 2014/15. Three gifts have already been received - before the fundraising appeal was even mailed! - and we have high hopes that we can be successful.


For more news on this initiative, and to make a gift, please follow this link:


Note from the Editor

We invite our readers to submit news, pictures, and videos that might be of interest to others in the ASSIST community. Please send them to Meg Moulton, VP for Marketing & Communications: meg@assist-inc.org.
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