Division of Student Affairs

High School Teachers from Around the Globe

The IREX-TEA Fellows at BGSUThe Office of Multicultural Affairs, in collaboration with the School of Teaching and Learning; the School of Education Foundation, Leadership and Policy; and the Office of Service Learning, is currently hosting 20 international high school teachers from 17 different countries. These teachers, participating in the International Research and Exchanges Board’s Teaching Excellence and Achievement Program (IREX-TEA), arrived on BGSU’s campus on January 1st, and have been attending classes, workshops, and training sessions for the last several weeks. They have also been observing classes in their content areas in various local high schools to further develop expertise in their subject areas, enhance their teaching skills, and increase their knowledge about the United States. 

The Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA) has been responsible for providing cross-cultural and intercultural communication orientations to all individuals involved with the program at BGSU including the faculty, staff, IREX-TEA fellows, and participating local high school teachers. Throughout the program, the OMA has also facilitated cultural capital and diversity workshops, team building activities, and weekly debriefings. Mery Murilla Herrea, an English teacher from Costa Rica, said “the diversity workshops really opened my eyes and helped me see the world from completely different perspectives. I am excited to incorporate my learning here in my classroom and school back in Costa Rica.” 

Under the leadership of Krishna Han, Assistant Director for Diversity Education Program, two cultural trips were also offered to the fellows. On February 23rd – 25th, Han took the group to Chicago. Svitlana Trofymchuk, an English teacher from Ukraine, and Erica Van Lingen from South Africa said it was the most memorable and wonderful trip of their lives. On March 2nd, the group departed for Detroit where they visited the Detroit Historical Museum and Heidelberg Project. According to Han, these Detroit attractions were selected to “provide a window to the history of the city that would allow them to better understand the people, places, and events that helped shape lives of people in the region.” Prior to the Detroit trip, Han said “indeed, it is a place full of fascinating stories, and I hope the visit spurs their curiosity to learn more about the recent history of Detroit as well.” The scholars will be on campus through March 18, 2013. This program was made possible through an IREX-TEA grant.