HU Students, Faculty, and Alums Trek to China to Teach English Language Camps

On July 9, 2015, seven Huntington University teams will depart for five locations in China to lead English language camps.

Since 2007, HU’s Institute for TESOL (Teaching of English to Speakers of Other Languages) Studies has sponsored yearly English camps and training in China. The programming transpired as a result of the connections that Dr. Luke Fetters, director of the Institute for TESOL Studies at HU, has in China.

From 1987 to 1997, Fetters served as director of a conversational English program for adults and a teacher at Pui Ching Middle School in Macau, China. His experience in China allowed HU to pursue the summer programing.

The teams will provide English-speaking instruction and camps for students, as well as TESOL training for teachers in the cities of Changsha, Zhongshan, Zhuhai and the district of Doumen. The university’s Institute for TESOL Studies organizes the programming each year, writing curriculum and recruiting volunteers.

Six HU faculty members, 16 current Huntington students and seven alumni will join Fetters on the trip to China during which 195 teachers and 730 students will be trained.

Four of the HU teams will assist in the teacher training for two weeks before returning to the United States, while two other teams will return after three weeks. One team will remain in China for five weeks.

The 2015 summer will conclude a five-year contract between HU and the Doumen district. Shoshannnah McKinney, associate director of the Institute for TESOL Studies, said by the end of the five years, every teacher within the district will have participated in the HU-sponsored training.

The trip fulfills a practicum required for students seeking a TESOL minor or certificate. McKinney said the trip will provide practical experience for students that can be applied to their future careers.

McKinney also said that the summer program will continue to strengthen the relationship that HU has with China.

“Over the past eight years, HU has grown in terms of being known in China,” McKinney said. “This strengthens the potential for some of the [Chinese] students to come to Huntington in the future.”

While the teams are in China, McKinney will spearhead another TESOL-sponsored program on HU’s campus. This program is a three-week TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) course that will certify 19 Chinese professors to teach English at their respective universities.