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Volume 13, Edition 1: August/September 2013

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Carla Fitz: First Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant from the University of Innsbruck, Austria

Carla Fitz, Fulbright FLTA from the Universtiy of Innsbruck, Austria

As part of the university’s commitment to international education, UNCG and IPC host several visiting scholars each academic year. These scholars help bring diverse perspectives to our academic community while making positive contributions to the university. One of the scholars visiting our campus for the 2013-14 academic year is Carla Fitz, who is our first Fulbright Foreign Language Teaching Assistant (FLTA) from Austria.

Originally from Dornbirn, Austria, Carla comes to us from the University of Innsbruck in Innsbruck, Austria, where she is earning a Master’s degree in teaching. Specifically, her focus is teaching English as a second language to German-speaking middle and high school students. She applied for the Fulbright FLTA program because she wished not only to gain experience in the classroom but also to improve her English and experience American culture. When she was accepted, she was placed at UNCG.

During her time here, Carla will be working as a teaching assistant for the German Studies program in the Department of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures. Dr. Susanne Rinner, Associate Professor and Director of Undergraduate Studies in German, was instrumental in bringing Carla to our campus. Dr. Rinner originally pursued adding an FLTA to the German Studies faculty in order to give students an opportunity to engage with native German speakers and help enrich their intercultural understanding.

Carla is teaching two classes this semester, an introductory level course in German and a German conversation course. So far, the classes have been very exciting for her, as they are the first she has taught on her own. “It is very exciting to finally get to teach,” she says, “and this has been an especially interesting challenge because I’m teaching my native language, German, through English, which is my second language.”

In addition to teaching classes, Carla is also auditing two courses, Young Adult Literature (English) and North Carolina History. She is especially excited about the former, since she has long loved YA Fiction. When asked what her favorite YA novel is, she said Harry Potter. “It was the first English book I ever read. It took longer for the series to be translated into German, and I wanted to read them right away, so I made myself learn the language.” She is also very interested in how YA novels can been used as a teaching tool in middle and high school classrooms to encourage students to read.

Carla Fitz demonstrates how to make apple strudels, a traditional Austrian pastry

Though many postgraduate students live off-campus, Carla is living on campus as a Faculty-in-Residence in Cotten Residence Hall. So far, she has enjoyed the experience, which has allowed her to immerse herself more fully in university life. “It’s very different from my university in Austria, which doesn’t really have a campus; it’s just part of the city,” she says. “I like being surrounded by students, and I think it’s also interesting for them to see their professors living day-to-day, outside the classroom.” In addition to being involved in life at Cotten, she will also be working as a facilitator for the Global Village in Phillip-Hawkins Residence Hall. On August 5, she invited students in Cotten Residence Hall, Hinshaw Residence Hall, and the Global Village to a demonstration on making apple strudels, a traditional Austrian pastry. The event was a success, and she hopes to facilitate similar events in the future.

Carla will be living and working at UNCG until May 2014. Overall, her experience thus far has been very positive, and UNCG and IPC are delighted to welcome her into the UNCG community!

Representatives from City University of Hong Kong visit UNCG to discuss possible exchange partnership

Last month, UNCG and IPC welcomed visitors from the College of Business at the City University of Hong Kong (CityU) in Kowloon, Hong Kong, to explore the potential development of a new student exchange agreement between our universities. An Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB) accredited school, the CityU College of Business was represented by Dr. Mary Pang, Associate Dean (Internationalization), and Ms. Kang Yee Lee, Executive Officer (External Liaison), who visited our campus on August 16. During their visit, Dr. Pang and Ms. Lee met with Dr. Penelope Pynes (Associate Provost for International Programs) as well as members of the Study Abroad and Exchange staff.

Dr. Pang and Ms. Lee also met with several faculty and staff members from the Bryan School of Business and Economics, including Dr. McRae Banks (Dean, Bryan School), Amanda Pelon (International Programs Advisor and Lecturer, Bryan School Undergraduate Student Services), Dr. Jerrie Hseih (Associate Professor, Department of Marketing, Entrepreneurship, Hospitality, and Tourism), Dr. Ambrose Jones (Associate Professor, Department of Accounting and Finance), Dr. Stuart Allen (Professor, Department of Economics), and Dr. Vasyl Taras (Assistant Professor, Department of Management).

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