Thursday September 14, 2017

GEF Program supports Faculty Development, University Partnerships and more.

This summer, the university piloted a new program, offering 5 faculty members the chance to participate in the University of Dayton’s Global Education Fellows (GEF) program. This program, designed as an extension of the Global Education Seminar (GES) program, offers previously participating faculty advanced engagement into their initial GES projects. The GEF is a vehicle by which faculty have the support to further develop relationships to enhance their own research, partnerships, curriculum development, scholarly initiatives and establish sustainable education abroad opportunities for campus. 

The GEF program participants were:

Christopher Agnew, Department of History
Diana Cuy Castellanos, Department of Health and Sport Science
Barbara John, Department of Economics and Finance
Suki Kwon, Department of Art and Design
Shuang-Ye Wu, Department of Geology

One of the GEF participants, Diana Cuy Castellanos, along with Bob Brecha (another previous GES participant), visited Peru. “The GES program offers a great start [for faculty] because it’s all very new at that point. You go through the seminar experience, travel to the locations, and really start to get your feet wet, but there is a lot of relationship building that needs to be done, in very little time.” The GEF programs hopes to assist in continuing to build and develop these relationships.

After the success of Cuy Castellanos’s initial experience (a faculty-led study abroad program for the Health and Sport Science program in Chile in Summer 2017), she realized there was more potential from her initial trip. It was through her GEF experience that a relationship was developed with the Pontifical Catholic University of Peru (PUCP), a university who is conducting a large amount of research on renewable energy and sustainability. Diana’s experience in GEF, and the support of a variety of campus colleagues, fostered a formalized partnership with PUCP, and the future creation of an interdisciplinary study abroad experience focused on sustainability, specifically climate change and food.

While in Peru, Diana and Bob had the chance to visit a small village in the Andes Mountain for a weekend. A faculty member from PUCP hosted them on this trip, and arranged for them to meet with local officials in the community to learn more about the specific needs of the village. Diana shared “there is hope that students from UD, along with students from PUCP, could work on specific projects for communities. Projects that are sustainable beyond their time there. I’m looking forward to how the program unfolds.”  

Her visit also bridged an experience for a faculty member from PUCP, who will be a visiting professor here at UD in Spring 2018. This mutual investment is what the GEF is designed to create.  

The current 2017-2018 GES cohort is focusing on Ghana and Togo. In the coming weeks, the call for nominations will open for the 2018-2019 cohort, focusing on Ghana and Cameroon. For more information contact Sangita Gosalia at sgosalia1@udayton.edu in the Center for International Programs or your department chair.

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