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Global Option at EHE enhances student experience

Anthony Rodriguez
Tue, 2016-01-12 02:00

Undergraduate students in the College of Education and Human Ecology now have a way to gain international expertise as a part of their studies at The Ohio State University.

The college’s Global Option, or GO EHE, is a brand new initiative for the 2015-16 academic year. It was created to enhance students’ education by challenging them to think globally and giving them opportunities to develop skills that they will need as the world becomes increasingly connected.

“Study abroad is an incredible learning opportunity for our students, but it won’t be their only experience with people and places different than what they know,” said Holly Asimou, an EHE academic advisor and coordinator of special programs.

“American businesses often have international clients, professionals in the health professions need to effectively communicate with patients from other cultures, and today’s educators need to diversify their pedagogy in order to reach students from a variety of backgrounds. The world is getting smaller and the GO EHE program allows our students to explore this.”

What is GO EHE?

The GO EHE program was designed to prepare students to work effectively in international settings; develop awareness of and adaptability to diverse cultures, perceptions and approaches; become well-versed in current issues and major global trends; learn to communicate effectively across cultural and linguistic boundaries; and comprehend the international dimensions of their programs of study.

“We believe that these skills will give our students an advantage both in the job market and as they look to pursue graduate study,” Asimou said.

The Global Option in the College of Education and Human Ecology has four requirements to complete:

  1. A study abroad experience;
  2. International learning through approved coursework, an internship outside the United States or participation in the Office of International Affairs’ English Conversation Program (ECP);
  3. Culture or language proficiency; and
  4. A capstone course.

Many EHE students will find themselves well on their way to earning the GO EHE designation through the degree requirements they are already completing.

“Our students are very motivated,” Asimou said. “They want to do more and get involved in meaningful ways that will enhance their university experience and their professional aspirations.”

An Ohio State initiative

Giving students more opportunities for a globalized education has been an initiative of Ohio State for several years now. In addition to EHE, the colleges of business, engineering, public affairs and social work also have launched international student learning experiences. And the College of Food, Agriculture and Environmental Science and the Knowlton School of Architecture are in the process of developing global option programs.

Each, along with EHE, has developed a Global Option to help students develop the skills and knowledge that will prepare them to actively and successfully participate in a global society throughout their careers.

The ongoing priorities of Ohio State to create more globally aware graduates started in 2009. This has been achieved through a combination of curriculum innovation, research and scholarship, community engagement and the creation of programs like the Global Option.

A benefit to future careers

Students already engaged in EHE’s Global Option see it fitting seamlessly into their existing studies.

“GO EHE adds a new component to my education at Ohio State and exposes me to new ideas and perspectives that will benefit me in my future endeavors in the fashion and retail industry,” said Emily Hentrich, a second-year student in Human Sciences.

Anna Renner, a second-year student in Teaching and Learning, believes GO EHE will make her more competitive.

“I decided to pursue GO EHE because it encompasses the topics that I am most passionate about: education and international awareness,” she said. “I am studying to be a Spanish teacher, and being recognized for having a more global awareness will definitely set me apart.”

The Global Option in EHE is flexible and allows students to choose experiences and coursework that fits their educational goals.

To learn more about the Global Option, students should consult with their academic advisor at Undergraduate Student Services.

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