Funds Renewed for International Leaders in Education Program

Posted on 12/6/2016 2:52:41 PM

Indiana University of Pennsylvania has received a second year of funding from the Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs to continue the International Leaders in Education Program. This year’s funding is for $185,000.

As a recipient of the funds, IUP will, again this year, serve as a host institution for 16 international secondary teachers (Fellows) for an immersive professional development experience.

The ILEP Fellows also will be on site to learn from teachers at Indiana Area High School and Brashear High School in Pittsburgh to gain different contexts and perspectives on the American educational system.

The focus of the program is to promote and develop teacher leadership, technology integration skills, and intercultural exchange. The ILEP Fellows are from Brazil, India, Kenya, Malaysia, Morocco, Philippines, and Senegal.

The ILEP Fellows will participate in two academic courses as well as two semester-long workshops delivered by faculty members in the IUP College of Education and Educational Technology: Educational Seminar, taught by Laura Strong; and Technology Workshop, led by Lloyd Onyett.

After an orientation in Washington, D.C. starting on January 3, 2017, the Fellows will come to Indiana. From January 15 to March 4, the ILEP Fellows will spend Wednesdays at Indiana Senior High School with selected partner teachers, and will be at Brashear High School in Pittsburgh from March 18 to May 6.

Lara Luetkehans, dean of IUP’s College of Education and Educational Technology, and Michele Petrucci, associate vice president for the IUP Office of International Education and Global Engagement and executive director of the American Language Institute, co-authored the grant application.

“Last year’s program went beautifully,” Petrucci said. “The Fellows told us that it was an enriching experience for them, and they learned a great deal both in and outside of classroom settings. In turn, it was a beneficial experience for us as hosts to learn from the Fellows and to gain a better appreciation for their countries and cultures.

“It is truly an honor for IUP to, once again, be selected to host the ILEP Fellows and, through this grassroots, people-to-people diplomacy effort, it is one small step towards increasing awareness and making the world more tolerant,” she said.

The workshops and seminars offered by IUP faculty are designed to enhance the ILEP Fellows’ expertise in their teaching disciplines and equip them with a deeper understanding of best practices in teaching methodologies, lesson planning, and the use of technology in education, Luetkehans said.

“We were very, very pleased with the program last year, and we look forward to hosting this new cohort of ILEP Fellows,” Luetkehans said. “Partner teachers in the schools are also excited to be involved again. It’s a win for everyone involved.”

The program is implemented by the International Research and Exchanges Board. IUP is only one of four institutions selected as a host university. The other host universities for spring 2017 are Arizona State University, Kent State University, and James Madison University.

The program recognizes the “transformative power of an effective teacher,” IREX officials note. The International Leaders in Education Program is designed to offer teaching fellows with enhanced teaching methodologies, lesson planning techniques, teaching strategies for their home environments, leadership abilities, and technology skills through targeted coursework, intensive training, and collaboration with colleagues from around the globe.