Indiana University of Pennsylvania is welcoming students from the University of Miyazaki, Japan—no passports or suitcases required.

IUP began providing an eight-week, virtual (online) intensive English program for graduate students from the University of Miyazaki this year; the first group of 12 students completed the course in February. The second cohort of 12 students began study in August and will complete the course in September.

The instruction is provided by the IUP American Language Institute, IUP’s long-standing intensive English program.

The ALI has welcomed students from around the world for 40 years, providing intensive English programs for students who want to improve their language proficiency and cultural understanding of the United States. Associate Vice President for International Education and Global Engagement Michele Petrucci, who developed the program agreement, is the executive director of the ALI and Emma Archer is the ALI director.

Funding for the program is provided by the US Consulate Fukuoka. IUP has received a total of $12,000 for the project.

IUP President Michael Driscoll and Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs Lara Luetkehans participated in a virtual collaboration celebration with University of Miyazaki administrators in December 2022.

During his remarks at the event, President Driscoll recognized the program “as a great example of how learning is best when it is shared. At IUP, we have some amazing people who are excited to help share knowledge, and they are eager to work with students from the University of Miyazaki.” He also reinforced IUP’s commitment to international education and IUP’s appreciation of the partnership.

“We look forward to the shared exchanges of this collaboration, as we work to ensure education has no boundaries. It’s an honor for IUP to be included in this collaboration because it’s a sign of how we can change our world through education,” President Driscoll said.

“This program is a win for both universities,” Petrucci said. “We are very pleased to be a partner with the University of Miyazaki,” she said.

The coursework includes individualized tutoring for the students through the IUP American Culture and English tutoring program. In addition to language instruction, tutors work to develop cultural understanding with the Japanese students.

Throughout its history, the ALI has received government grants to provide special programs for student groups from Asia, Latin America, and the Middle East. In addition, the ALI has a long history of welcoming students from universities with exchange partnerships with IUP as well as from other international universities that seek to send students for a semester abroad. Many students come to the ALI before beginning a degree program at IUP. The multilingual and multicultural diversity of the ALI provides great learning opportunities for our students as well as members of the IUP and Indiana communities.

The instructional staff at the ALI are all selected for their expertise in English language teaching, and all have a minimum of a master’s degree in teaching English to speakers of other languages (TESOL) or a related area, and experience working with English language learners.