Genesee Community College is taking “big steps” toward international programs this year, Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Eunice M. Bellinger reported to the Board of Trustees Monday evening.
International programs provide opportunities for area students to study abroad, and for students in educational institutions in other parts of the world to participate in Genesee Community College programs, Dr. Bellinger told trustees. Genesee Community College has attracted a growing number of international students to the Batavia Campus, topping 100 students for each of the last several years. The new international initiatives, however, make formal international programs available to GCC students and students abroad.
New international programs include:
- Study Abroad. This summer, Genesee Community College students are participating in a three-week course in the Amsterdam area of the Netherlands, studying sociology and photography. Students interested in Human Services and Irish Culture are participating in a three-week study course in the Irish countryside. The College is also preparing to sign a new nursing and biotechnology student exchange program with an Australian college.
- FATEC Initiative. Following a pilot program last year, Genesee is offering a summer cultural and English language immersion program, as well as courses in business entrepreneurship and fashion design, to students of Faculdade de Tecnologia (FATEC), a Sao Paolo-based technical college in Brazil. Coming soon will be a dual degree program between FATEC and GCC in Logistics, faculty and administrator exchanges, and possible international workforce development initiatives.
- Intensive Language Institute. Faculty members are currently researching language institutes at other colleges and planning curriculum. Planned for summer 2012 is an intensive language institute at Genesee Community College, focusing on English, Portuguese, and Italian.
- ACE International. The College has identified American and International schools abroad interested in participating in Genesee’s highly successful Accelerated College Enrollment (ACE) program. Under this program, Genesee would offer its own courses in selected high schools abroad, using staff and facilities of those schools. The College hopes to offer courses in the near future at International High Schools in Vietnam, China, and Kazakhstan, Dr. Bellinger said.
International initiatives represent “big steps” for Genesee Community College, Dr. Bellinger told board members, but these steps are a natural progression from the College’s service to international students and the College’s longstanding emphasis on global awareness. The initiatives are receiving wide support from the college community, according to Dr. Bellinger: “We have faculty enthused, we have students enthused … what more can we want?”
Some international initiatives, such as dual degree programs, require State University of New York involvement, which faculty and staff members are pursuing. “SUNY leaders are very excited that we are doing this,” Dr. Bellinger said, noting that one of SUNY’s broad goals is to become recognized for international outreach and programs.
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