Covering Kentucky

Nov 4, 2012 5:00 PM

UPike Expanding To Add Global Education Program

PIKEVILLE, Ky. (AP) - The University of Pikeville keeps expanding.

The Appalachian News-Express (http://bit.ly/W7ncgG) reports that the school in far eastern Kentucky is working on adding a global education program and an Intensive English Institute.

Director of Global Education Sandy Kroh says the university is drafting the framework for the program, which still has to get approval from the Southern Associations of Colleges and Schools, which bestows accreditation to UPike. She said the program as currently envisioned would include three areas: Intensive English Institute, international student services and study abroad.

She said the school hopes to begin the program early next year.

Kroh said one facet of the program would teach international students how to speak better English; another would help them with services such as getting a driver's license; the third would encourage students - American or international - to study for she expects 10-15 international students to sign up for the program initially, but eventually the university plans to have between 40-45 international students in the program.

The Intensive English Institute will "help support the students that want to study at UPike but their English isn't at level yet," she said.

"The plan is to begin it in January and we'll have three levels," she said. "There's a beginning, intermediate and advance level and then you have five skills which will be a listening class, speaking, grammar, reading and writing and it's academic English."

Current international student Sven Rodenbusch from Simmern, Germany, said there's a need for the services.

He said currently Kroh advises students on issues of importance.

"She's helping us a lot like with all these rules," Rodenbusch said. "For example, I thought if I could I could work off campus so if I would just go and do that I'm actually risking my visa and without a visa I can't go anymore. So it's like important things that we're getting help with."

In addition, Rodenbusch said sometimes international students get placed in higher-level classes, but they aren't prepared for them. For instance, he said a classmate was placed in a higher-level English class where he's expected to write research papers.

"He doesn't even understand the teacher and never wrote a research paper in his life. He doesn't know what APA or MLA is, so how is he going to pass this class, no way. So, he had to get out of it and trying to get in a lower level class which they've already gave him though. So to prevent that having someone like that has the experience before makes it a lot easier to like because the systems exists they just have to be fitted right," he said.

School officials say the new program will allow UPike to make sure international students are placed in appropriate classes.

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Information from: Appalachian News-Express, http://www.news-expressky.com

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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