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Practitioner-Scholars are Leading UKIC

Friday, May 9, 2014

Practitioners lead professions, while scholars conduct research. There is often a clear division between these two roles, but not at the University of Kentucky International Center (UKIC).

Anthony Ogden, executive director of Education Abroad & Exchanges, actively publishes, presents, teaches and consults while leading UK’s very successful Education Abroad office

“I like the notion of a practitioner-scholar,” said Ogden. “People often think of scholar-practitioners: tenured faculty who take on administrative roles and become practitioners. But there are also practitioner-scholars: individuals who have developed their careers as practitioners, but have done so from an intellectual, scholarly position.”

Ogden has been very busy in his practitioner role. Through his leadership, Education Abroad enrollment has dramatically increased in recent years and has far exceeded national trends, from just under 600 students in 2009-2010 to over 1,000 students in 2013-14. UK students have studied, interned, conducted research and taught in over 50 different countries, including destinations such as Cuba, Zambia and Indonesia.

While he has been growing international education on UK’s campus Ogden is also advancing the field of international education through a forthcoming book, titled “A research agenda for the internationalization of higher education in the United States.”

Building on an already long list of publications on international education, Ogden has also authored chapters in two Oxford University Press edited volumes this year: “Education in North America” and “Internationalization of Higher Education and Global Mobility.”

Ogden is also publishing a chapter in the 4th edition of “NAFSA’s Guide to Education Abroad for Advisers and Administrators.”  Ogden’s chapter is titled “Effective Utilization of Institutional Data for Strategic Education Abroad Planning and Campus Advocacy.” 

Education Abroad Advisor Thomas Teague has also been selected to author a chapter in NAFSA’s guide. Teague’s chapter, “While Abroad,” covers information on how to advise and support students while they are abroad. 

Elizabeth Leibach, director of UKIC’s International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) office, is also actively publishing while expanding ISSS’s services.

Through Leibach’s leadership ISSS, and working with Professor Tom Clayton has expanded its services to international students enrolled in the Center for English as a Second Language (CESL). ISSS has also developed new workshops, courses and resources to help UK’s academic advisors provide better service to international students.

Leibach has coauthored articles in professional publications such as the International Educator magazine published by the Association of International Educators (NAFSA), and the American Society for Engineering Education’s (ASEE) journal. 

Leibach’s NAFSA article reviewed various advising models used by international student offices around the U.S., and assessed how the models were implemented over time. The ASEE article explored common challenges universities face when developing an international transfer articulation agreement.

Recently Leibach received a Fulbright International Education Administrator Seminar award to study South Korea’s educational systems this summer.

During her Fulbright in South Korea, Leibach plans to meet with government officials, ministry of higher education officials, universities and other private industries to understand what motivates students to study in the U.S. and what avenues they take to get here.

“The system by which South Korean students gain scholarships and access to higher education in the U.S. is very diverse, including nontraditional avenues such as private businesses that sponsor their staff for graduate study in the U.S.,” said Leibach.

Leibach hopes her Fulbright will also help her better understand Korean students on UK’s campus – there were 137 South Korean students on campus during the Fall 2013 semester.

“This will help me promote the culture of South Korea on our campus and ensure UK is prepared to partner with South Korean institutions, which will increase the number and quality of South Korean students, scholars and faculty on UK’s campus,” said Leibach.

Susan Carvalho, associate provost for internationalization, creates an environment of excellence by encouraging UKIC staff to be leaders in their professional and scholarly pursuits.

“UK needs not only to be following national and global best practices, but to be creating those best practices and sharing them with our colleagues at other universities,” said Carvalho. “Such contributions to our evolving field of expertise serve to promote UK, at the same time that they sharpen our own awareness of what we do and how we measure our growth. As scholars, we simultaneously serve our students, our university and our profession.”

In addition, said Carvalho, “Our scholarship helps us talk to UK’s faculty as peers and professionals. This is an intellectual community that respects—and expects—scholarly rigor behind all of our assertions about the benefits and methods of internationalization.”