Growing International Impact Focus Of New Global Perspectives Chief

Developing UCF’s place in the world is David Dumke’s mission.

And Dumke is well-suited to the task. Since 2012, Dumke has led the Prince Mohammad Bin Fahd Program for Strategic Research and Studies. Now Dumke is taking on his next task: leading the Office of Global Perspectives and International Initiatives. The leadership post was held for years by John Bersia, a Pulitzer Prize-winning  authority on international politics who passed away in March.

The full scope of his plans are still in development, but Dumke plans a balance between expansion and fortifying existing resources. UCF has already developed strong ties with Orlando’s international community. The India Center, for instance, was launched in 2012 and has sponsored both overseas trips to develop ties with Indian universities, and hosted cultural events on campus. Statistical research into Central Florida’s Puerto Rican community is underway through the Puerto Rico Research Hub.

Still, Dumke doesn’t take the local ties for granted.

“Outreach is important,” he said. “We do have the luxury of being a large university in a global town, but you have to make the effort and visit these communities.”

Building bridges within UCF is also on his radar. In another instance of capitalizing on existing resources, Dumke is developing plans with the College of Education and their partnership with a university in Botswana.

“Our office serves a university-wide function,” Dumke said. “This takes into account the complexities of UCF’s work and the global community. Issues like sustainability, for instance, involve multiple fields of research and study.”

One of the primary goals is to invoke a sense of scale and complexity in global affairs. That moment came for Dumke in high school when the first Gulf War broke out. While there was one narrative presented by the media, Dumke suspected the forces at play were much more complicated and deep-rooted. He became a self-described “news junkie,” hunting down newspapers and magazines, and attending lectures and speeches.

That “aha moment” sparked a lifelong fascination with international politics, particularly in the Middle East. Dumke’s resume before UCF includes consulting with the Egyptian Ministry of Defense through government relations firm The Livingstone Group; a regional advisor for Goddard Global; and an aide for two U.S. representatives and a senator.

Dumke will draw on that experience as he shapes UCF’s global direction.


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