Guest post by Dr. Helen Yuan Zhuang
Campus globalization has been one of the key areas for Missouri State’s long-range plan since 2016. To foster an environment that is international in teaching, research and service, and to develop global academic collaboration opportunities, International Leadership and Training Center (ILTC), Office of China Programs, and Faculty Center for Teaching and Learning (FCTL) initiated the GREAT (Globally Responsive Education and Teaching) Program.
On February 14, GREAT hosted its first monthly event, a panel discussion on understanding international students at Missouri State. The event attracted about fifty attendees, including Missouri State faculty, staff and students, and visiting scholars from China.
After a brief introduction from GREAT Program co-chairs, Peng Zhang and Dr. Yuan Helen Zhuang, Dr. Jim Baker, Vice President for Research and Economic Development and International Programs, welcomed the audience and overviewed Missouri State’s international programs. Dr. Nancy Gordon, Director of FCTL, reinforced FCTL’s support for both GREAT Program and Missouri State faculty.
The panelists included Dr. Kim Kyoungtae (Associate Dean of College of Natural and Applied Sciences, MNAS Director), Dr. Judith Martinez (Assistant Professor, Modern and Classical Languages), Courtney Pham (Senior Instructor in Department of Marketing), Jinzi Fan (Program Specialist, International Programs), Rachel Love (Teacher Training Specialist, English Language Institute), and Shadeed Khan (Graduate Assistant, International Services).
Each panelist shared their own international learning experiences, and thoughts on characteristics in the cultures of China, South Korea, Vietnam, India, Mexico, and Saudi Arabia. They also discussed the challenges and difficulties encountered by international students on campus and gave suggestions on supporting our students from the faculty’s perspective.
In the end, Brad Bodenhausen, Associate Vice President International Education and Training, concluded the panel with an enlightening speech on Missouri State’s 2016-21 Long-Range Plan and the importance of globalization for the university, the students, and the whole community.
The next GREAT event will be a comparative discussion on the US and Chinese Higher education system and academic culture, held from 1:30 pm – 3:00 pm on March 13 in PSU 314.