Faculty Development for Study Abroad
2014 Heiskell Award Honorable Mention: Internationalizing the Community College
Nomination submitted by: Jennifer Robertson, Director of Study Abroad & Global Experiences
Valencia College's plan for internationalizing the campus focuses on increasing student participation in study abroad by training faculty leaders and increasing funding for students. The college developed a Study Abroad Program Leader Certificate to assist faculty in the program development process and to ensure safety for all programs. A competitive proposal process was launched for faculty to lead short-term study abroad that gives priority to programs that have demonstrated high enrollment. In addition, the college created a Program Leader-in-Training mentorship initiative, which partners veteran faculty leaders with new faculty leaders who participate on a program as a mentee before leading students abroad. Finally, Valencia increased student scholarship funding by changing its funding model and using Student Development and Foundation funds to support study abroad.
The certificate program led to an increase in the number of faculty applying to lead a short-term study abroad program each year, ultimately resulting in more program options for the students and an increase in short-term study abroad enrollment.
Serving a diverse population at five community college locations in Central Florida, Valencia has also engaged faculty in the college’s efforts to internationalize the curriculum at home for students who cannot travel overseas. The interest prompted an Internationalizing the Curriculum event this past summer where faculty teams worked to integrate international/intercultural components into their courses. Faculty are also engaged in the work of creating internationalized course toolkits to make their curriculum work available college-wide.