International Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges, and Universities (IAMSCU)
Preparing and Connecting Leaders around the World!
Education and Leadership in the Wesleyan and Methodist traditions.
Strong Roots and Long Tradition
Education is an integral part of the Methodist Movement led by John Wesley and Charles Wesley in 18th century England. Kingswood School was the first Methodist school, founded by John Wesley on June 24, 1748, and is still in existence today. Methodist education has developed significantly, represented today by nearly 800 IAMSCU members in 80 countries.
The Wesleyan and Methodist tradition of education unites knowledge and vital piety. In this tradition, teaching and learning must have a social emphasis. Education is the key to eradicate slavery, poverty, hunger, illiteracy, unemployment and many other forms of oppression worldwide. Education is the key to promote peace, development and well-being.
The History of IAMSCU
IAMSCU was created during the 16th World Methodist Conference in Singapore in July 1991, a major initiative in promoting integration, internationalization and inter-institutional cooperation within Methodist education. Its goals are to increase the availability of educational opportunities throughout the world, improve the quality of education, and enable educational institutions and those with Methodist traditions to collaborate through the development of common understanding.
The structure of the organization consists of the assembly, board of directors and executive officers (President, Vice President and Secretary/Treasurer). The board of directors is composed of members from Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America. Annual meetings are held to advise and approve planned programs and promote activities supported by the association. The assembly meets every three years during the IAMSCU Conference, the hallmark event of the association.
The Global Dimension of Methodist Education
In the 21st century, IASMSCU has promoted important initiatives to nurture Methodist education at global, regional and national levels.
- Globally, IAMSCU integrates all networks of educational institutions related to the Methodist and Wesleyan traditions. IAMSCU is associated to the World Methodist Council (WMC) and its Education Committee.
- Regionally, IAMSCU works with the Africa Association of Methodist Institutions of Higher Education (AAMIHE), Africa Association of United Methodist-related Theological Institutions (AAUMTI), Asia-Pacific Association of Methodist Educational Institutions (APAMEI), Philippine Association of Methodist Schools, Colleges, Universities and Seminaries (PAMSCUS), Methodist Theological Schools in Europe (MTSE), Latin American Association of Methodist Educational Institutions (ALAMEI), and, in North America, the Association of United Methodist Theological School (AUMTS) and National Association of Schools and Colleges of The United Methodist Church (NASCUMC).
- Nationally, there are many associations within specific countries, such as the National Association of Schools and Colleges of The United Methodist Church (NASCUMC) in the United States, the Methodist Institute for Educational Services (COGEIME) in Brazil, and several associations in Argentina, Bolivia, England, Kenya, Korea, Liberia and many other countries.
Since its inception, IAMSCU has had three presidents:
- Dr. Roger W. Ireson (USA), elected in Singapore in 1991, led the association from 1991 to 2002. In concluding his tenure in September 2002, he received the title of Founding President Emeritus of IAMSCU.
- The Second president was Dr. Rukudzo Murapa (Zimbabwe). Elected at the Board of Directors meeting held in Oslo, Norway, for the 2005-2008 term.
- The third president was Dr. Ted Brown (USA) who took office in July 2008 during the 5th IAMSCU Conference held in Rosario, Argentina.
- The fourth and current president is Dr. Marcio des Moraes (Brazil), elected in May 2014 at the 7th IAMSCU Conference held in Hiroshima, Japan.
Many leaders in Methodist and Wesleyan education have been involved in the leadership of IAMSCU and offered support to its activities. They have included Dr. Kim Cape (USA), Dr. Ken Yamada (USA/Japan), Dr. Almir de Souza Mai= (Brazil), Dr. Masanobu Fukamachi (Japan), Dr. Manfred Marquardt (Germany), Dr. Elizabeth Charles (India), Dr. Amos Nascimento (Brazil), Dr. Ovidio Torres= (Argentina), Dr. Bae Jong Lee (Korea), Dr. Gerald Lord (USA), Principal Bradley Fenner (Australia ), Dr. Jerome King Del Pino (USA) and many others.
There are more than 800 schools, colleges, theological seminaries and universities in nearly 80 countries that participate in IAMSCU. Among them are Duke University (USA), Africa University (Zimbabwe), Emory University (USA), Aoyama Gakuin University (Japan), Methodist University of São Paulo (Brazil), Reutlingen School of Theology (Germany), Kenya Methodist University (Kenya), Westminster School (Australia) and Yonsei University (Korea).
As part of its service to education, IAMSCU promotes the following activities:
- Meetings, Workshops and Conferences • International Directory of Institutions • Human Rights Network • Exchanges of Faculty and Staff • Institutional Support and Technical Assistance • Methodist International Student Exchange Network (MISEN)
- Fundraising and Volunteer Opportunities
- Other Programs
IAMSCU Meetings, Events and Conferences
The IAMSCU conference occurs every three years with the participation of educators from around the world. Topics of relevance to global education have always been discussed. Since its creation, the association has organized eight conferences:
- 1996: The 17th World Methodist Conference, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
- 1998: Kingswood School, London, England
- 2001: Methodist College, Belfast, Northern Ireland
- 2005: Westminster School, Adelaide, Australia
- 2008: Universidad del Centro Latinoamericano, Rosario, Argentina
- 2011: Washington, D.C., USA
- 2014: Hiroshima Jogakuin University, Hiroshima, Japan
- 2017: Universidad Madero, Puebla, Mexico
World Methodist Council
IAMSCU is affiliated with the World Methodist Council (WMC). In partnership with the WMC Education Committee, it promotes lifelong education by means of studies, reflections, contacts and exchange of information. IAMSCU recognizes and shares the diversity of perspectives in Wesleyan and Methodist traditions of education and seeks a shared vision and mission to support the educational ministry of the several member churches of the World Methodist Council. To achieve these goals, IAMSCU and the Education Committee promote concrete actions and events in global education. This work involves persons, institutions and partners around the world.
(MGEFLD) Global Education Fund
The MGEFLD is based on the principle of shared vision, shared responsibilities and shared costs. It supports education in five global regions: Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America and North America. Each region raises resources and shares them with local programs, always thinking globally and acting locally.
Higher Education and Ministry
The General Board of Higher Education & Ministry (GBHEM) of The United Methodist Church has supported IAMSCU since its beginnings and contributes to the goal of connecting educational institutions and churches worldwide, sharing available resources and providing tools to prepare new generations of Methodist leaders