The School of Communication is very excited about our growing efforts to expand our international/intercultural curriculum. It is our hope to create a structured series of courses and experiences that students can proceed through in order to develop high level competencies in intercultural/international communication. These courses will be offered to students on campus and through study abroad experiences.
On campus, we have proposed COMM 1050—Global Understanding. This is a course already taught on campus in other disciplines and we will add to the university’s offering in this area while adding a communication focus to the series. Additionally, we are working with the Department of English to create a course in the English Language for Global Communication. This will be a course open to the entire student population interested in how the English language is used throughout the world. Dr. Sachiyo Shearman is leading our efforts in this area currently.
We hope that these courses will provide a strong basis of understanding in intercultural and international communication on which we can build. Students interested in this area might start with these courses and then move on to our courses in intercultural communication, international news and international public relations.
Recently we have extended our work with global partners to provide international study experiences as well. In addition to working with others in CFAC on the Italy Intensives program, we are also developing programs in Poland and Germany, as well as possibilities in Trinidad and elsewhere. This summer, Dr. Linda Kean, Director of the SOC, has been invited by Krosno State College in Poland to participate in a two week summit on immigration around the world. Here she will present on images of Latinos in the U.S. media. She will also meet with administrators and faculty at Krosno State to begin developing a partnership which will include team taught courses utilizing the global classroom at ECU and summer study abroad opportunities at the undergraduate and graduate level.
Another global partner of ours comes from Germany. For two years, the School of Communication has welcomed international students from Accadis Bad Homburg University in Germany. We are now taking the next step in working on exchanges for our students and faculty.
A third initiative in our school is working with the nonprofit organization, Amizade, to offer service learning experiences in the global arena. Dr. Rebecca Dumlao is heading up our investigations in this area.
Finally, we are working with ECU’s Office of Continuing Studies to investigate other ways in which we can create study abroad opportunities which take our students and faculty abroad to learn about interpersonal, organizational, intercultural and mediated communication from a global perspective. We are very excited about growing this dimension of our curriculum.