The University of Michigan proudly announces the establishment of the Khyentse Visitorship in Buddhist Studies, a new program that will invite leading Buddhist teachers from around the world to U-M’s campus. The visitorship, made possible by the generosity of a group of donors led by Sin-Ming Shaw and Barbara Ma of Bangkok, will bring teachers from a variety of Buddhist traditions to share their knowledge with the U-M community.

“Khyentse” is a Tibetan term meaning wisdom and compassion. The Khyentse Visitorship will enable Michigan students and faculty to meet with teachers from across the Buddhist world, in both the classroom and at public events. With one of the largest Buddhist Studies programs in North America, U-M currently boasts four scholars of Buddhism in the Department of Asian Languages and Cultures (ALC), and courses attract as many as 1,000 undergraduates each year as interest in the field continues to grow.

“Whenever we have been able to invite a Buddhist teacher to campus in the past, our students have learned a great deal from them,” said Donald Lopez, the ALC department chair and the Arthur E. Link Distinguished Professor of Buddhist and Tibetan Studies. “We are most grateful to Mr. Shaw, Ms. Ma, and the other donors, whose generosity will allow us to invite prominent monks, nuns, and lamas from the many traditions of Buddhism to come to Ann Arbor on a regular basis for many years to come.”

The Khyentse Visitorship will begin during the 2015-16 academic year, when it will welcome Dzongsar Khyentse Rinpoche, a Bhutanese lama, filmmaker, and writer, in whose honor the program is named. Those interested in contributing to the Visitorship are invited to contact Klementina Sula,