Penfield College of Mercer University Trains South Korean Teachers as Part of Cultural Exchange Program


ATLANTA – Professors from the Department of Liberal Studies of Mercer University's Penfield College are working with a group of 33 South Korean teachers as part of a cultural exchange program established by the Georgia Department of Education and the Republic of Korea.

The program, organized and administered by ITTI Global Foundation, under the leadership of Ho Jin Yoon, includes special lectures on Mercer's Cecil B. Day Campus in Atlanta from July 29-Aug. 8, as visiting Korean teachers of English improve their English in addition to learning American teaching techniques and learning outcomes. They will also participate in several cultural experiences. At the conclusion of the program this Friday at 10 a.m., Mercer will present certificates of completion to the Korean teachers.

“I am pleased that our liberal studies faculty in English and communication have the opportunity to help these teachers learn principles of discussion and debate that they can incorporate into their K-12 classrooms and teach their students in Korea,” said Dr. Priscilla Danheiser, dean of Penfield College of Mercer University.

“In addition to solid linguistically-based instruction and practice in the English language, the students are learning public speaking skills and the principles of debate at the request of ITTI and the Georgia Department of Education. Highly interactive, the sessions feature the presentation of mini teaching units, storytelling and public speeches by the South Korean teachers,” said Dr. Margaret Eskew, professor of English and project director. “The Korean teachers and Mercer staff have forged lasting friendships and developed greater cultural awareness.”

Along with Dr. Eskew, Dr. J. Thompson Biggers, associate professor of communication, and Mary Lou Beale, adjunct professor, served as instructors for the program.

The exchange program was announced in March 2013 by State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge and ITTI, a leading public education service provider in the United States and the designated institution for international training by both the Georgia Department of Education and the Korean Ministry of Education.

“We are excited by the prospect of Georgia schools sharing our education best practices with our Korean guests and of our teachers learning Korean best practices as well,” said Superintendent Barge.

About Penfield College of Mercer University

Penfield College of Mercer University, established as the College of Continuing and Professional Studies in 2003, is committed to serving non-traditional learners and currently enrolls more than 1,300 students. Undergraduate, graduate and certificate programs are offered to working adult learners seeking professional advancement into leadership roles in and beyond their communities. Educational programs provide students with distinctive, multidisciplinary programs that integrate theory and practice. The College offers general education and elective courses for various colleges and schools at Mercer. Another initiative called the Bridge program transitions students enrolled in Mercer's English Language Institute and other international students to undergraduate programs throughout the University. Areas of study include organizational leadership, counseling, school counseling, human services, human resources, informatics, public safety leadership, nursing preparation, liberal studies, psychology and communication. Programs are offered on Mercer's campuses in Atlanta and Macon, as well as multiple regional academic centers in Douglas County, Henry County, Newnan and Eastman. To learn more, visit