Comprehensive internationalization spans the entirety of DU's functions as a higher education institution. Get to know the staff dedicated to supporting and advancing international engagement at DU.
Meet the Internationalization Staff
Vice Provost for Internationalization
Dr. Uttiyo Raychaudhuri joined DU as the Vice Provost in January 2020 and will be the primary advocate for the University’s internationalization efforts. He is charged with leading the University on internationalization programs, partnerships and services, as well as developing and implementing DU’s comprehensive internationalization agenda. Dr. Raychaudhuri is to lead the continued development of DU’s global strategies and to preside over an Office of Internationalization that highlights DU’s strength in research, community engagement and teaching worldwide. Additionally, Dr. Raychaudhuri manages a large and complex set of units including the International Student and Scholar Services, and the Office of International Education, which runs DU’s hallmark undergraduate study abroad experience, the Cherrington Global Scholars program. He is responsible for the development and continuation of DU’s strategic partnerships with select institutions abroad, an essential part of DU’s long-term vision. With nationally recognized academic programs, a history of widespread influence, a forward-looking vision for a 21st century education and a deep commitment to promoting inclusion, DU opens a world of opportunity to students and empowers Pioneers to make a difference around the world.
Dr. Raychaudhuri joins DU from Cornell University, where he served as the first executive director in the Office of Global Learning, providing leadership and vision for the university in global learning, study abroad, faculty-directed courses and programs, and international immigration and support services. Prior to his work at Cornell, Dr. Raychaudhuri also served as Director of Clemson Abroad at Clemson University and before that at the University of Georgia. He has successfully advocated for high-impact, evidence-based academic and global engagement as a key foundation of the universities strategic plan. Dr. Raychaudhuri has worked in the capacity of both faculty and administrator roles and been actively engaged in the field of international education for over 18 years. His leadership in education abroad programming has been recognized twice (2012 & 2014) with the IIE Andrew Heiskell Award for Best Practices and Innovation in International Education.
Executive and Academic Director for Internationalization
Casey works with campus constituents to develop, implement and facilitate initiatives related to comprehensive internationalization, particularly Internationalization at Home which is meant to provide all students with access to global learning and perspectives. This includes advancing global and intercultural learning through the formal and informal curriculum. His research focuses on faculty member engagement and development in intercultural and international education.
Additionally, Casey provides academic and administrative oversight, direction and management of intercultural development coursework tied to cross-border education experiences, serving 750+ students per year. This includes curriculum design, assessment, and instructor development including supporting a learning-centered pedagogy.
Finally, Casey assists in maintaining and growing university-wide elements of internationalization such as the Internationalization Council, the Internationalization Summit, and developing and integrating the University’s strategic partnerships. He also serves as the faculty director for the Global Engagement Living and Learning community as well as the co-advisor for the U.S. Student Fulbright Program.
Director for Strategic Partnerships
Before joining DU, Leasa served as the Assistant Director of Strategic Partnerships and Initiatives for the Fulbright Finland Foundation in Helsinki. Prior to this position, she led knowledge development efforts with the European Association for International Education (EAIE) in Amsterdam.
Leasa has over 20 years of experience as a scholar-practitioner in international higher education, including roles as a Fulbright fellow, president of the global Erasmus Mundus Association, and an expert in numerous European projects. Bridging research with practice, she continues to contribute to thought-leadership in the field of internationalization and has authored and edited numerous international publications. Her career in higher education began in student affairs, and alumni and parent relations at the University of Colorado at Boulder.
She holds a PhD in higher education policy from the University of Georgia, an Erasmus Mundus joint master’s degree in European higher education from the University of Oslo, Norway; University of Tampere, Finland; and University of Aveiro, Portugal, and an undergraduate degree in Psychology and Communications from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Director, Office of International Education
Emelee Volden is the Director of the Office of International Education at the University of Denver (DU) where she provides strategy and advocacy for education abroad and global learning.
Prior to DU, Emelee was the Senior International Officer at the University of Wisconsin La Crosse where she was responsible for all campus internationalization efforts, education abroad, international student and scholar services and ESL. She has also worked at Northwest College (WY) where she led international student recruitment, admissions and retention efforts and the University of Minnesota where she advised on and assisted with the development of education abroad programs.
Emelee earned an M.A. in Higher Education Administration from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities and a B.A. in Fine Arts from the University of Sioux Falls. Emelee’s international education experience began as an undergraduate student studying abroad in Florence, Italy. After graduation, she then taught in Wajima, Ishikawa, Japan on the JET Program, returning to the U.S. eager to begin her professional career in international education.
Her areas of expertise include comprehensive internationalization, program development and management, partner collaboration, faculty training and development, cross-cultural communication and intercultural competency, study abroad advising, and student development.
Director, International Student and Scholar Services
Theresa Johnson is the Director of International Student and Scholar Services where she oversees immigration compliance and cultural adjustment for DU’s international student and scholar populations. International students and scholars play a critical role to bring unique perspectives and important knowledge to campus and Theresa is honored to be a part of that here at DU.
Theresa joined DU from Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois where she worked in the Office of International Student and Scholar Services for over 10 years. She most recently served as the Associate Director where she managed the operations of the office and oversaw the International Scholar Team. Prior to joining the staff at Northwestern, she worked with the Fulbright Scholar Program at the Institute of International Education in Washington, DC.
Theresa earned her Bachelor’s Degree in International Studies with a minor in French from American University, spending a semester abroad in Brussels and a semester abroad in Paris. She earned her Master’s Degree in International Education from George Washington University.
In her spare time, Theresa likes to play tennis, go for runs, and explore on her bicycle. When the weather doesn’t allow for outdoor activities, she enjoys watching true crime dramas, travel shows, and playing board games
Director of Business and Operations for Internationalization
Mike Marquez is the Director of Business and Operations for Internationalization. He has worked in education for over twenty-five years with a focus on serving underrepresented groups in the classroom and surrounding community. Prior to joining DU, he was the Director of the Western Educational Equity Assistance Center at MSU Denver where he oversaw the finance and policy structure of the center. In this role he led one of four equity centers in the nation as part of a federal grant with the United States Department of Education. The center provided technical assistance and professional development to K-12 educators on equity related topics to ensure an equitable education for all students.
His experience in higher education includes work as an administrator in athletics and as a student advisor. Mike was also a High School Social Studies teacher in the rigorous curriculum of the International Baccalaureate (IB) Program. He spent over two decades as a high school football coach and worked early in his career in the Human Services field as a counselor in youth placement centers. His education and professional experience has occurred primarily in the Denver boundaries with a Bachelor's Degree in History from MSU Denver and a Master's Degree in Education from Regis University along with work as an educator in Denver Public Schools and the Adams 12 School District. He is committed to contributing to the mission of the Office of Internationalization and expanding opportunities for global engagement.
Administrative Assistant, INTZ
Michael Smith is the Administrative Assistant for the Office of Internationalization. As a Denver local, Mikey was born and raised in Aurora. His experience with international education began at Rangeview High school where he participated in an exchange program that sent him to the German state of Baden-Wurttemberg. He continued his international education in college studying International Business and Marketing at Florida International University in the culture rich city of Miami. During his time there he participated in a study abroad program that took him throughout the Mediterranean region visiting places in southern Spain and Italy which eventually brought him to the professional world of international education.
Once back from his time abroad he stepped into a student assistant position with the Office of Global Initiatives at FIU’s College of Business. After spending two years in that role, he graduated with his Bachelor of Business Administration degree in May of 2020. Making the best of the unfortunate timing the Covid-19 pandemic placed on his youthful career in international education, Mikey explored other interests within hospitality and entertainment. After two years in various roles at both the Gaylord Rockies Resort & Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom, he found his way back to international education in his hometown here at the University of Denver, Office of Internationalization.