Chinese scholars visit UWP strengthens partnership
PLATTEVILLE - A worldwide initiative - a graduate program in China begun by the University of Wisconsin-Platteville - was heightened by a delegation of Chinese scholars visiting UWP last week.
Six scholars from South Central University for Nationalities (SCUN) in Wuhan, China, toured UWP and the surrounding area.
The gathering also strengthened the partnership for the master's degree of science in English education (MSEE) established at SCUN, said UWP Director of Clinical Experiences Wally Iselin.
Iselin, who is in charge of the MSEE program, is justifiably proud. "We have 38 students enrolled, and may begin another group of 38 in the near future."
Visiting UWP for the first time are Honglei Deng, professor of law; Zhenya Lei, SCUN vice president; Fenglou Sun, professor of research; Zonggui Huang, campus newspaper editor; Xiurong Liu, director of student activities and career advising and Zhijian Ruan, associate professor.
The scholars came to campus to discuss the progress of UWP's two-year 30-credit MSEE program.
Launched at Wuhan in May of last year, the program offers a master of science in English education (MSEE) and is the culmination of more than two years' planning and development.
Visiting an American college campus and a middle school made a positive impact on the group, said Iselin.
The group received a warm welcome from Principal David Allen at Platteville Middle School, Iselin added. "David gave us a tremendous tour," he said. "Our visitors were truly impressed by the warm, caring attitude of students and staff."
UWP's MSEE program at Wuhan consists of 30 credits and includes teaching English as a second language, technical writing and courses on research methods.
Under the terms of the agreement, UWP faculty from the English program and School of Education traveled to Wuhan to provide instruction.
Last summer, three UWP faculty members - Teresa Burns, Carmen Faymonville and Patricia Jonas - taught at Wuhan.
The experience for Burns provided an exceptional opportunity to learn about Chinese culture. Working with faculty and students, Burns taught a two-week course on methods of teaching English as a second language.
"The students were a wonderful group to teach," said Burns. "I'm very excited about this program and am interested in a long-term relationship which may result in an exchange program for Chinese students to come here," said Burns.
The experience also helped Burns with her professional development goals. "I'd certainly like to go back sometime," she said.
An option for the second year of the MSSE program allows for Wuhan graduate students to come to UWP to complete their respective degrees.
SCUN is the largest university in Hubei Provence, and Wuhan, an industrial city with a population larger than that of Wisconsin, is located on the Yangtze River.
The Wuhan scholars visited surrounding tourist attractions, including the Platteville Mining Museum and points of interest Galena, Ill., and Dubuque, Iowa, along with the state capitol at Madison.