Allegra Laing to serve as regional chair for association of international education

Allegra Laing, assistant director of diversity and inclusion in study abroad, was nominated unanimously as chair for NAFSA Region VII for 2020.  

Allegra Laing, assistant director of diversity and inclusion in study abroad at Elon, has been selected to serve as regional chair for NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

The Region VII Nomination Committee has selected Laing as chair-elect for 2019, with members voting in a September election to confirm her position. Laing will then serve as chair for 2020 and past-chair for 2021.

“I am honored to assume this role on the NAFSA Region VII team,” said Laing. “NAFSA continues to be fueled primarily by member-leaders — international education professionals who volunteer their energy and skill set to offer resources, conferences, and workshops to our colleagues in the field.”

NAFSA: Association of International Educators is the largest nonprofit association for international education and serves 10,000 members representing more than 3,500 institutions in 150 countries. The North America association is divided into 11 geographic regions, each representing three to nine states and territories. Region VII includes the most named territories and spans Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, Puerto Rico, South Carolina, Tennessee, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

As chair, Laing’s primary responsibility will be to oversee implementation of the regional conference in 2020 to be hosted in Alabama. She also serves as the liaison between Region VII and NAFSA central leadership and will appoint new leadership for the region.

NAFSA is fundamentally a collaborative organization and relies on the contribution of its member-leaders. In addition to service by leadership, hundreds of member volunteers serve on committees, task forces, and knowledge communities.

Laing understands this commitment intimately as she has held several positions within NAFSA. Laing served as the chair of the North Carolina Association of International Educators (NCAIE) from March 2017 to March 2018, and the HBCU-Minority Serving Institutions representative for NAFSA Region VII from July 2013 to November 2016.

In my journey as an education abroad practitioner, I’ve benefited greatly from the opportunities provided by NAFSA Region VII and am eager to re-invest what has been generously sown into my professional life,” Laing said.

Laing joined the Isabella Cannon Global Education Center at Elon University in March 2016 as a study abroad coordinator. In June 2018 she assumed the role of assistant director for diversity and inclusion in study abroad and leads the office in integrating inclusive excellence into all aspects of the study abroad advising process.

Laing, a graduate of Spelman College, began her career in international education as a graduate intern at her alma mater working with the Study Abroad and International Student & Commuter Services Offices. Previously, Laing served as an education abroad advisor at Washington State University from 2004 to 2008 and as the study abroad coordinator at N.C. A&T State University from 2008 to 2016. 

Laing’s nomination is a tribute and testament to her commitment to international education. “The Global Education Center is excited and proud that our colleague Allegra Laing has been selected as chair of NAFSA’s Region VII,” said Woody Pelton, dean of global education. “Allegra has long been in leadership positions within NAFSA, and this is a great honor and recognition of her contributions over the years.”