i-Engaged for a Competitive Edge

As you plan for your semester, academic year, and time at Chatham University, we encourage you to be more iEngaged (i.e., Engaged in more International activities) to expand your global thinking and skills and gain a competitive edge in the job market.

Why?

  • There’s an “edge effect,” which boosts creativity and innovation, when differences come into contact – Listen to this NPR’s Hidden Brain podcast to find out more.
  • Nine out of 10 employers say they rely on employees with language skills other than English. Read this full report by ACTFL.
  • International engagement like this increases your chance of being selected for prestigious scholarships, such as Fulbright student grants. 

So will you …?

  • study abroad (many scholarships from Chatham and outside organizations are available)
  • participate in events with international students
  • learn a foreign language at Chatham or while study abroad  and even add a minor in French, German, or Spanish
  • participate in the Conversation Partner Program – Apply here by September 6
  • participate in Global Focus activities
  • consider adding the International Studies Certificate
  • and ask your professor, advisor, and the Office of International Affairs (internationalaffairs@chatham.edu) to learn about these opportunities

Summer 2019 International Programs

Twelve English courses, nine field trips, 21 participants in the Conversation Partner Program, 28 short-term students, and 103 study abroad students are some statistics that describe the work of the Office of International Affairs, English Language Program, and affiliated departments in this summer 2019 semester.  Despite the current uncertainties and turbulence in the international education field, we continued our commitment to running excellent programs and creating optimal learning opportunities to students.

As a final project for the Academic Lectures course, students worked in groups to create proposals to make Chatham a better place for everyone. They then presented their posters at the End-of-Term Celebration. Their poster presentations offered great recommendations to improving international programs and student experience, including:

  • Making Chatham cooler by creating “green curtains” from ivy plants and pergolas
  • Using the Carriage House as the Global Community Room where domestic and international students gather for conversations and activities – This emphasizes the importance of turning a space into a “place to be” for certain activities
  • Making Chatham attractive to international students by improving student experience, building more partnerships that work, and creating “friendlier” websites. The goal is to promote intercultural understanding, valuable experience, and a more diverse learning environment – a promise that Chatham is working hard on delivering
  • Providing international students with more opportunities to socialize and use English through “big events,” “small events,” day trips, and holiday parties – things that Chatham does much better in the fall and spring semester, but is lacking in the summer term

Students highlighted the importance of creating a social event in a relaxing environment at the beginning of the semester so that they could bond with others. Students reported forming closer friendships and doing more things together after the BBQ Party at Mr. Musick’s house.

Below are pictures of the highlights of these programs, followed by pictures of students’ posters, illustrating the suggestions students made.

End-of-Term Celebration
Picking apples on the Eden Hall campus
Waking to the Three Rivers Arts Festival
Having a Joint Class with Education Students
Team Purple at the Shadyside Scavenger Hunt
Short-term Students at the Point State Park
Students presented their posters at the End-of-Term Celebration
Making Chatham Cooler – A winning project by Ren, Fadia, Yuki, and Yurika
A very well-prepared poster on student activities by Linh, Ayano, and Kan (LAK)
Miyu, Moeko, and Mana proposed something similar to what they have at Kansai University
Mikaella, Shodai, and Hinako made great suggestions on improving the website. They also highlighted very important aspects of what will make Chatham ore attractive to international students.
Ngoc, Miyako, and Takuto suggested more day trips beyond Pittsburgh
Vy, Ryota, and Shuta highlighted the importance of informal events that allow students to bond

Sommer in Deutschland

By Natalie Gmiter (Human Biology 2020)

The German classes that I took with Dr. Martina Wells from the Modern Languages Program at Chatham University have been my favorite classes. This summer I was lucky enough to spend two and a half months studying abroad in Germany. I stayed in a small town, Lohr am Main, situated about 50 minutes east of Frankfurt. The people I stayed with have been my family’s friends for all my life, but I hadn’t seen them in quite a few years. They have two sons, Max and Felix, who became my ‘adopted’ brothers for the summer. Max is my age, so he was kind enough to introduce me to all of his university friends! Over the eleven weeks, I made so many great friends who provided me with memories that I’ll never forget.

Aschaffenburg Volksfest with Family

The class that I took was German History from 1900 to 1970 and was held at the University of Wuerzburg. We met once a week on Tuesdays, but the class also offered optional extracurricular events like wine tastings and historical tours of the city. I really enjoyed the class despite it not being a part of my major, but I found that most of my learning occurred outside the classroom. My main reason for visiting Germany was to practice and improve my German speaking skills. I was able to do this on an everyday basis, whether it be ordering food or asking a passerby for directions. And while I did do my fair share of touring around (I was able to visit France, Luxembourg, and Belgium), I found that my favorite things to do revolved around whatever the locals did on a daily basis! In finding out that they, too, enjoy spending a day outdoors and then grilling hamburgers amongst friends, I realized that despite distance and language, we are all the same at our core.

My experiences!
• Went to a Champion’s League soccer game
• Visited the Cologne Cathedral and even heard someone playing            the organ inside it

Cologne Cathedral

• Toured the Residenz in Wuerzburg, which contains the largest              ceiling fresco painting in the world

The Residenz Wuerzburg

• Toured Luxembourg city and a castle in the country regions of                Luxembourg
• Visited the World War I Memorial at the Battle of Verdun
• Enjoyed walks in the woods where I would stumble upon either a        herd of goats or beautiful secluded church
• Became a surprise guest in a primary school’s English classroom
• Toured the European Parliament Building in Brussels, Belgium
• Watched the first two stages of the Tour de France in Belgium

Tour de France Stage in Brussels

• Ate the most wonderful Belgian waffle off of a street vendor,                  mmmm
• Tried seven different white wines native to Wuerzburg.                              Wuerzburg has Germany’s second, third, and fourth largest                    vineyards and specializes in white wines. The wine cellar                            underneath the Residenz holds up to 700,000 liters of wine!
• Watched people surf on the river Isar in Munich
• Stayed at a youth hostel and made some friends from the UK and        Australia
• Visited the World War II Labor Camp Dachau

“Work sets you free” KZ Dachau

This study abroad experience pushed me out of my comfort zone and encouraged me to grow as a person. I would highly recommend anyone to study abroad if they get the chance!