Educational visit for Oklahoma Governor and First Lady
Swansea University's American Studies Department has hosted a visit by the Governor and First Lady of Oklahoma, Brad and Kim Henry.
The Governor and First Lady (pictured) were visiting the University on a fact-finding mission, alongside visits to London and Dublin organised by the US's Council of State Governors, which Governor Henry currently chairs.
With deep-rooted interests in education and quality health care, the Governor and First Lady toured the School of Medicine's new £52million Institute of Life Science (ILS) to learn about the Institute's global, ongoing battle against serious and life-threatening illnesses such as cancer, diabetes, obesity, and mental health disorders.
They also met with climate change research staff from the University's School of the Environment and Society, and addressed students in the School of Humanities, including some of the 300 Americans who study at the University during each academic year.
Pictured, left to right, Professor Don Davis, Professor Jon Roper, First Lady Kim Henry, Governor Brad Henry, and Professor Richard B Davies, Swansea University's Vice-Chancellor.
The visit to Swansea was arranged through one of the University's Visiting Professors, Don Davis, formerly President of Cameron University in Oklahoma.
Governor Brad Henry said: "Oklahoma and Wales have much in common. Both are working hard – and successfully – to expand their knowledge-based economies through partnerships involving research institutions, business and industry and government agencies.
"We're not just working harder, we are working smarter to assure a bright future for our citizens in an increasingly global economy.
"I've been impressed by what I have heard about innovations coming from Swansea University and am excited to have met with those responsible. Hopefully, we will be able to build an alliance and share ideas as we both continue to prosper."
Professor Jon Roper (pictured with the Governor and First Lady), Head of the Department of American Studies, said: "We were delighted to welcome such distinguished American guests to the University and to strengthen our links with the state of Oklahoma.
"We look forward to working together to increase opportunities for students from Oklahoma to come to Swansea and to be part of one of the most successful US Study Abroad programmes in the United Kingdom."
Swansea has a thriving American Studies Department with around 250 students and well-established links with American universities across the US.
The Department is one of the leading centres for American Studies in the UK and offers a wide range of courses in American literature, history and politics, and popular culture at undergraduate and postgraduate level.
The American Studies Exchange Office is located within the Department, which helps students prepare for their year of study in the US, as well as administering exchange agreements with 18 US universities. The Department also administers a number of internship opportunities for students.
The Department's research interests cover the core disciplines of American Studies: literature, history and politics. Particular research strengths and special interests include the Americanisation of culture; the 'war on drugs'; ethnicity and multiculturalism; Native Americans; labour history; silent film; the American Presidency, and the impact of war on American society.
The Department welcomes three to four visiting academics from the US who teach in the Department each academic year. It has hosted many visiting speakers from all over the US, including former US Ambassador to Britain William Crowe, also from Oklahoma.
For more information about the Department of American Studies at Swansea University, visit the Department's website.