International Affairs Staff
Paige Brake, MS.Ed | Director, Education Abroad
615-904-8117 | Jones Hall 155 | Paige.Brake@mtsu.edu
Paige serves as the Director of Education Abroad. Her passion for global initiatives began when she studied abroad in Germany, France, and Austria as an undergraduate student. She has ten years of experience working in the International Education field. During those years, she held many positions at Austin Peay State University as a Student Assistant, Administrative Assistant, and Coordinator for the Office of Study Abroad and International Exchange.
She is responsible for directing the daily operations of the Office of Education Abroad. She works closely with various stakeholders at the university including Academic Deans, Chairs, Academic Advisors, Financial Aid, the Registrar and Bursar to ensure MTSU Education Abroad programs are successful.
Juvy Burns, D.M. | Executive Assistant
615-904-8190 | Jones Hall 152 | Juvy.Burns@mtsu.edu
Dr. Burns serves as the Executive Assistant for the International Affairs Office. She monitors and reconciles budgets within the department, process requisitions, contracts, memoranda of understanding and payment authorization. She also maintains department wide records, reconciles department wide purchasing, and associated budget while serving as first point of contact for the office and assists in the planning and implementation of department wide events, manages hospitality services for guests and delegations, assists in insurance processing and supervises student workers.
She worked with the Leyte Normal University (LNU), Tacloban City, Philippines for more than 16 years, a decade of which she devoted to serving as the secretary of the university and of the Board of Regents. A Focal Person for the Gender and Development (GAD) for a few years, headed the administration area team for accreditation of undergraduate and graduate programs, and was in the classroom as part -time teacher both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Dr. Burns has collaborated and facilitated successful searches for university presidency, and evaluation for the re-appointment of the LNU president, as well as instrumental in international academic, extension, and cultural linkages. Here in the United States, prior to joining MTSU, she served as Faculty Affairs coordinator in Belmont University; Staff Assistant to the Board of Trustees in Anne Arundel Community College in Maryland and Administrative Assistant in Marietta Memorial Health System. Dr. Burns values spirituality, humility, passion, compassion, integrity, diversity, service, and excellence.
Caroline Clasby | Director, International Admissions and Recruitment
615-898-5674 | Jones Hall 114 | Caroline.Clasby@mtsu.edu
Caroline oversees both international recruitment efforts and undergraduate and graduate
admissions. She is responsible for strategically planning what countries we visit
and helps develop university relationships as part of MTSU’s multipronged recruitment
plan. She leads all international admission processes and policies and works to make
sure our processes are following nation-wide university best practices.
Rehab Ghazal, Ph.D. | Associate Vice Provost
Jones Hall 159 | Rehab.Ghazal@mtsu.edu
Dr. Rehab Ghazal serves as the Associate Vice Provost for International Affairs. She
is a skilled Global Educator with vast experience in student engagement, corporate
partnerships, and program evaluation and accreditation. Dr. Ghazal’s research and work has focused on promoting cultural understanding in
educational settings and developing the professional skills of English as a Second
Language (ESL) teachers and administrators. She has received funding from the Department
of State, the Fulbright, CitiGroup International, the American Embassy in Cairo and
the Boeing Company, among others. She works with the International Affairs team on creating high-profile learning programs
and services, maximizing overall performance, and driving high-efficiency processes
615-494-8643 | Jones Hall 117 | Cindy.Habara@mtsu.edu
Cindy oversees all immigration compliance matters at Middle Tennessee State University as well as activities sponsored by International Affairs for currently enrolled and newly admitted students. She is responsible for ensuring the university and its students are aligned with the USCIS and SEVIS regulations. In addition, Cindy advises students and scholars on maintaining their immigration status while they study and work in the United States. She also counsels students as they apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT), Curricular Practical Training (CPT), and other F and J visa benefits. Cindy has wide-ranging international experience, having lived in Japan for over two decades and raising two bi-cultural children.
Mei Han, Ph.D. | Director, Center for Chinese Music and Culture
615-898-5718 | Miller Education Center 1600 | Mei.Han@mtsu.edu
An associate professor in the School of Music, Dr. Han serves as the director for the Center for Chinese Music and Culture. Dr. Han is an ethnomusicologist specializing in Chinese music and an internationally acclaimed concert artist on the zheng (Chinese long zither). She is responsible for planning and conducting international music and cultural programming and events. She helps bring Chinese and other music of the world to local communities and to build bridges.
Nathan Huddleston | International Specialist
615-494-7667 | Jones Hall 119 | Nathan.Huddleston@mtsu.edu
Nathan has been an International Education professional for over seven years; beginning
at the secondary education level on the tiny Pacific Island of Saipan. After two years
on the island and nearly five years as an advisor and SEVIS Coordinator at Texas A&M
University, Nathan is excited to join the team at International Affairs as an International
Specialist. Nathan enjoys analyzing international student data and finding creative
solutions to complex international student issues.
Joe Leestma | Education Abroad Advisor
615-494-7638 | Jones Hall 153 | Joseph.Leestma@mtsu.edu
Joe Leestma joined the Education Abroad Office as an Advisor in Spring 2022. Prior
to higher education, Joe worked as a refugee resettlement agent, career counselor,
and cheese monger. Joe hails from Northern Michigan, but has lived long-term in both
Uruguay and New Mexico. Before earning a MA in Latin American Studies from the University
of New Mexico in 2015, Joe spent extensive time traveling and studying in Mexico,
Panama, Brazil, Uruguay, and Argentina.
Stephen joins the International Affairs office as their part-time, remote Webmaster.
Having 25 years of experience in higher education in the US and abroad plus experience
in web development and design, Stephen brings an international perspective to his
web support responsibilities.
Megan Richard | Coordinator, International Student Scholar Services
615-898-2282 | Jones Hall 115 | Megan.Richard@mtsu.edu
As the Coordinator for International Student Scholar Services, Megan helps create
a sense of welcome and belonging for the international students by planning and organizing
activities and events for them to participate in. She collaborates with other departments
across campus to create new experiences and to find resources available for the international
students. Megan is also the content creator and manager of the social media platforms.
She advises international students in regard to student services and assists in immigration
procedures as a DSO. Megan has traveled extensively throughout the United States and
around the world.
Robert Summers, Ph.D. | Vice Provost
615-898-2116 | Robert.Summers@mtsu.edu
Dr. Summers serves as the Vice Provost for International Affairs. As such, he has
primary responsibility for the international enterprise at MTSU. He oversees the Center
for Asian Studies; the Center for Chinese Music and Culture; Education Abroad; International
Admissions and Recruitment; International Student and Scholar Services and the Intensive
English Program. Dr. Summers is a trained linguist and holds a faculty appointment
in the department of World Languages, Literatures and Cultures. He has a special interest
in Neo-Vyogotskian Language Assessment; the Applications of Technology to Second and
Foreign Language Pedagogy; and Comprehensive Internationalization in the academy.
Megan Vazquez | Analyst, International Admissions and Recruitment
615-898-2843 | Jones Hall 112 | Megan.Vazquez@mtsu.edu
Megan serves as the International Undergraduate and Graduate Enrollment Analyst. Primarily working with the graduate student population, she provides assistance to applicants throughout the admission process and to students for the duration of their education at MTSU.
Dr. Wilson leads MTSU’s recruitment effort for international students. He travels to strategically identified areas and countries to promote MTSU, recruit students, and build relationships. Dr. Wilson’s activities include cultivating and developing relationships with international high schools, agencies, government sponsors, and organizations that assist international students seeking to study abroad. John participates in recruitment fairs throughout the world. His efforts are targeted at the introduction of MTSU and contacting prospective international students.
Maureen Young serves as the Executive Assistant to the Vice Provost, and manager for the International Affairs office. She is responsible for coordinating and providing administrative and managerial support to the office. She also manages the international merit scholarship awards and coordinates services for the Intensive English Program.
Dr. Zheng’s responsibilities include forging institutional partnerships with Asian countries for academic and cultural exchange, organizing and hosting short term international programs, and conducting multi-cultural events. Dr. Zheng is a professor of Media Arts with extensive experience leading education abroad programs.