Global Gateway for Teachers
2017 Heiskell Award Honorable Mention: Study Abroad
Nomination submitted by: Dr. Laura L. Stachowski, Director, Global Gateway for Teachers
Gaining international and intercultural experience is critical for future educators. However, because of strict program requirements, teacher education majors have fewer opportunities to participate in traditional study abroad programs. The Global Gateway for Teachers provides teacher education majors with international immersion experiences in schools and communities worldwide, affording them the opportunity to engage in study abroad that speaks directly to their professional preparation for the teaching force.
The Global Gateway’s network of collaborators in the host countries secures the overseas school placements for student teachers at Indiana University as well as at 17 other US colleges and universities, making the program a national leader in student teaching abroad. A credit-bearing program complements the student teaching placement with community involvement, service learning, and academic reporting, extending participants’ learning well beyond the school day.
Indiana University’s School of Education took on the role previously held by the Foundation for International Education in 2012, changing the name from Cultural Immersion Projects to the Global Gateway for Teachers. IU expanded the U.S. partner institutions from 12 to 17, and now places 200 student teachers per year in host schools in 18 nations, with future expansion anticipated.
Given changing U.S. school demographics and increasing interconnectedness, initiatives like the Global Overseas Program of the Gateway for Teachers, through which student teachers learn from people of another race, culture, and/or nation, are critical. Immersion into the lives of members of diverse cultural groups, coupled with structured learning and reflection requirements in both school and community contexts, results in significant professional and personal learning that far exceeds the goals of most conventional student teaching experiences which often take place in the community surrounding the home university or in the student teacher’s hometown.
The Global Gateway student teachers return to the U.S. with insights about schooling, families, values, communities, and service in an international context; now classroom teachers, they bring a broader worldview, including perspective consciousness, so greatly needed in our nation's schools today.
“As a public university, Indiana University takes seriously our critical responsibility for engaged research and teaching that provides students with deep knowledge and sophisticated tools to understand, critically evaluate, and ethically participate in our increasingly complex and interconnected world. The Overseas Program and the Global Gateway for Teachers are prime examples of IU’s commitment to global engagement in the realm of education and teacher training.”
-Lauren Robel, Provost and Executive Vice President, Indiana University Bloomington