GSC Faculty Members Expand International Learning Opportunities with Summer Trips
Mon Aug 21, 2017

 

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 21, 2017

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Glenville State College
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GSC's Dr. Rico Gazal (seated, center) with faculty and others from the Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia in Johor, Malaysia GSC's Dr. Rico Gazal (seated, center) with faculty and others from the Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia in Johor, Malaysia

GLENVILLE, WV - Globetrotting faculty members from Glenville State College took several trips this summer, all of them orchestrated through the College's Office of International Programs in efforts to bolster study abroad opportunities for GSC students and faculty and to expand GSC's Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) program. These immersive opportunities for faculty were made possible by a Capacity Building Grant that GSC received from the U.S. Department of State and Partners of the Americas.

In June, Dr. Megan Gibbons and Dr. Rico Gazal traveled to Mahidol University International College in Bangkok, Thailand. Gibbons is an Associate Professor of Spanish and Director of International Programs and Gazal is a Professor of Forestry. The programs at Mahidol are entirely in English and offer coursework in several of the majors and minors found at GSC. Gibbons says the programs through Mahidol University are among the most affordable semester abroad programs around. While in Thailand, Gibbons and Gazal toured the campus, including their brand new academic building, student housing, and student center. They also had lunch with students and had the chance to do some sight-seeing.

In July, Dr. Gazal traveled to Malaysia to give a COIL presentation and to discuss faculty and student exchange opportunities. Last fall his Forest Ecology class COILed with a Biodiversity and Global Environmental Change class at Universiti Tun Hussein Onn in Johor, Malaysia. Gazal and his colleague, Dr. Alona Linotac, are COILing again this semester.

Luncheon meeting on with: (l-r around table) Ms. Julie Pollard, Director of Program Operations, KEI; Dr. Rico Gazal, Professor, Glenville State College; Dr. Catherine Pickering, Professor, Environmental Futures Research Institute, Griffith University; Dr. Kay Hartwig, Director of Internationalization, Griffith University; Dr. Jeff Hunter, Assistant Professor, Glenville State College; and Ms. Nicola Barr, Global Mobility Coordinator, Griffith University Luncheon meeting with: (around table l-r) Ms. Julie Pollard, Director of Program Operations, KEI; Dr. Rico Gazal, Professor, Glenville State College; Dr. Catherine Pickering, Professor, Environmental Futures Research Institute, Griffith University; Dr. Kay Hartwig, Director of Internationalization, Griffith University; Dr. Jeff Hunter, Assistant Professor, Glenville State College; and Ms. Nicola Barr, Global Mobility Coordinator, Griffith University

In August, Gazal and Dr. Jeff Hunter traveled to Brisbane, Australia and the Gold Coast. Hunter is an Assistant Professor of Science Education. Together they visited Griffith University, which also offers a wide range of courses, including education and child development. While they were there, they met with students and faculty, toured the academic building as well as student housing, and traveled to the Currumbin Wildlife Sanctuary.

The site visits will continue this semester when Gibbons, Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Ken Lang, and Assistant Professor of Business Kandas Queen travel to London and Dublin.

"Our faculty are excited to be taking part in these trips. It helps us to better develop cultural awareness and provides opportunities to increase the study abroad participation of first-generation and nontraditional students. The programs that we are selecting in other countries are great matches for our students at GSC. We're finding options for areas that typically are underrepresented in study abroad, such as criminology, natural resource management, education, and STEM," said Gibbons.

"I am very excited and encouraged by these trips that our faculty members are taking. Having a global perspective is so important for today's students and we're proving that there are a number of ways to gain that international experience, whether through traditional student or faculty exchange or via COIL classes that take advantage of modern technology. I look forward to seeing the enriching opportunities that evolve as a result of these trips," said GSC President Dr. Tracy Pellett.

GSC was the only college or university in West Virginia to receive a Capacity Building Grant for 2017.

For more information about International Programs at GSC, including study abroad opportunities for GSC students, contact Gibbons at Megan.Gibbons@glenville.edu or (304) 462-6321.

 

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