University of Tennessee
Center For International Education
International Student and Scholar Services
1620 Melrose Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37920
Holidays and Administrative Closings
Students: Mon and Thur, 1–4PM
Scholars: Mon and Thur, 1-4pm
Contact ISSS Staff
Wendy Syer, Assistant Director
International Scholar/Faculty Advisor
Wendy Syer is an Assistant Director of the Center for International Education, where she has worked since 1985. She has a Bachelor’s Degree from Tufts University and a Masters Degree in Intercultural Communication from the University of Minnesota. She has also studied in Germany, worked for three years in Malaysia, and lived in Austria and Uganda. She loves meeting and working with the international students and scholars at UTK and hopes they all have a positive experience in the U.S.
David Lawson, Coordinator
International Scholar Advisor
David is a Coordinator in the International Student and Scholar Services with primary responsibility for the J scholar program and advising F and J students. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in political science from East Tennessee State University and Master’s in counseling from the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky. David is originally from Maryville, Tennessee. After his undergraduate degree he lived in Nairobi, Kenya for two years. He believes that personal intercultural contact presents a great opportunity for a richer self-understanding and expanding one’s horizon.
Elizabeth Washam Smith, Coordinator
International Student Advisor
Elizabeth Smith is a Coordinator in the Office of International Student & Scholar Services. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in French and Communication from Wake Forest University in North Carolina and a Master’s degree in College Student Personnel from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. As an undergraduate, she spent a semester studying abroad in France, and then she returned to live and work on the island of Corsica for three years upon graduation. Elizabeth enjoys learning about the interests of international students and helping them to be successful at UT and in the U.S.
Brian Todd, Coordinator
International Student Advisor
Brian is a Coordinator in the Office of International Student and Scholar Services. He holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Carson-Newman University and a Master’s Degree in College Student Personnel from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Brian has previously worked in international admissions and advising in the community college and liberal arts college settings. He has significant experience traveling and recruiting abroad in Brazil, China, Japan, Malaysia, South Korea, Thailand and Vietnam. Brian enjoys welcoming people from around the world to Knoxville as well as hiking in the nearby Great Smoky Mountains National Park and other places in the East Tennessee region.
Candice Messick, Administrative Specialist
Candice is an administrative specialist in the Office of International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS). A native of Murfreesboro, TN and firm believer in civic engagement, she is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science here at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. During her time here, she has been an active participant in the International Friendship program. Candice is excited to work with the international students and scholars here at UTK, and looks forward to meeting each one!
Martin Walker, Graduate Assistant
Martin works in the Office of International Students and Scholars at the CIE. He was born and raised in New York, which is where he earned his BS in Mechanical Engineering and his BA in Anthropology. After working with the American Museum of Natural History in NY for a year Martin moved to Knoxville to pursue his PhD in Archaeology. Martin has travelled to, or worked in Honduras, Canada, Spain, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, England, Scotland, and Ireland.
Gabriel Dusing, Graduate Assistant
Gabriel is a Graduate Assistant in the Office of International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS). He holds a bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from Union University in Jackson, TN and a Master’s Degree in Mathematics from Murray State University in Murray, KY. He is currently pursuing a PhD in Mathematics at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Gabriel was born and raised in Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia. He loves learning languages and coding in Python and C#. Gabriel has travelled to Turkey, Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand, and South Korea. He would love it if you came by and said hi!