It was just a one-day visit between officials of Metro State and Yunnan Radio & Television University (YRTVU), but they were able to tweak the five-year-old exchange program agreement and discuss possible new initiatives that would benefit both institutions.
Metro State and YRTVU have had a sister school relationship since 2007, an arrangement that commits both colleges to encourage and support faculty and student exchanges and other forms of cooperation. Since then, the College has struck similar agreements with Aksum University in Ethiopia and the University of Pune in India.
Metro State officials and a three-person delegation from YRTVU amended the exchange agreement on Feb. 29 based, in part, on feedback from Bruce Degi, an associate English professor who taught during the 2010-11 academic year at YRTVU, which offers both distance education and regular classrooms.
“Their visit was basically to solidify our relationship and strengthen our partnership and to discuss new ideas about future projects,” says Ali Thobhani, executive director of the Office of International Studies. The delegation went on to visit places in the U.S. and Canada.
One change involves how long a Metro State professor will spend in China. Instead of a year, the next exchange professor will teach three months, probably leaving in mid-August and returning before Christmas, Thobhani says. YRTVU wants professors from the College who will teach English, so the Office of International Studies is recruiting from the English Department. The deadline for applications is April 6.
Both schools also discussed the idea of students from YRTVU completing part of their education at Metro State. “It’s a work in progress,” Thobhani says.
Also a work in progress is a proposal for Metro State students to travel to China for eight weeks of intensive Chinese language training. If the College goes forward with the idea, it would apply for a Department of Defense grant to help fund the project, Thobhani says.
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