Rupp gains student teaching experience in Jamaica

October 16, 2003

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PLATTEVILLE - International traveling and student teaching are two opportunities offered at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville that senior Kimberly Rupp will be taking advantage of.

Rupp, originally from Rewey, will be traveling to Malvern, Jamaica, Oct. 25 to student teach for three weeks at the Bethlehem Moravian College. During her student teaching assignment, Rupp believes she will be teaching college students how to teach music to others.

"I hope to learn first-hand about the Jamaican culture, music and people so that I can bring the knowledge into my classroom," Rupp said. "I feel that students should learn about other cultures and by student teaching in Jamaica, I will be better equipped to teach about these Jamaican customs."

During her time in Jamaica, Rupp will be staying with three other student teachers at the home of Ms. Sheila McFarlene in Malvern. Rupp also hopes to take advantage of other travel opportunities in Jamaica such as visiting Mandeville, Lover's Leap, Treasure Beach, Negril, Ocho Rios, Ys Falls and the Appleton Sugar Factory and Distillery.

"I'm not really sure what inspired me to decide to take this trip, but I heard about it in class and thought it sounded like a great opportunity," Rupp said. "Through a lot of discussion with my family and friends, I decided that it was something that would be a great experience and I went for it."

The Jamaican student teaching opportunity was developed through a partnership between Dr. Larry Kenney, associate dean of the college of education at UW-Whitewater, and the department of education at UWP.

Wally Iselin, director of clinical experience at UWP, traveled to Jamaica and toured 18 schools with Kenney to explore other student teaching opportunities. Following Iselin's return and a discussion with other members of the school of education at UWP, a two-week student teaching winter session international experience has been established. This winter, 15 students from UWP will participate in this new program.

When asked if she would recommend the student teaching program in Jamaica to other students, Rupp replied that she is looking forward to the opportunity to experience and learn about another culture first-hand and she encourages others to do the same.

Rupp will be graduating this December from UWP with a major in instrumental and general music education.

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