The center's namesake, Dartmouth College President John Sloan Dickey (1945-1970) welcomed entering students at Convocation with the charge, "Your business here is learning."
The first of his family to attend college, Dickey grew up in Lock Haven, Pennsylvania. He entered Dartmouth in the fall of 1925 and went on to be an accomplished student, earning the Rufus Choate Scholar distinction upon graduating. He studied criminology at Harvard Law, graduating in 1932. In 1945, he became President of Dartmouth College and remained president for 25 years, retiring in 1970. While president, he also served on President Truman's 1947 Committee on Civil Rights, the United Nations Collective Measures Committee in 1951, and as consultant to Secretary of State Acheson on disarmament.
President Dickey's commitment to the liberal arts, or, as he termed them, "the liberating arts," was perhaps best expressed in his Great Issues course, designed to introduce seniors to the problems of national and international relations they would face as citizens. He sought to expand the horizons of Dartmouth beyond Hanover and introduced the Northern Studies program, a Russian Civilization department, and foreign studies and social action programs, as well as opening the William Jewett Tucker Foundation.
Today, the Dickey Center unites the many and diverse strengths of Dartmouth College "its students, faculty, and undergraduate and graduate schools" in addressing the world's challenges. Dartmouth students who have received grants from the Dickey Center are able to travel the globe to participate in a wide range of internships and fellowships. Undergraduate and graduate students can participate in partnered internships, which the Dickey Center has arranged, or craft their own international experience.
Read more from The Dickey Center for International Understanding
View an interactive map of the locations of recent Dickey Center grant recipients