Monday, October 17, 2016

What do you know about Lesotho and Malawi?

The Humphrey's Fellows from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University are back at Vol State this semester. The visiting international scholars program has brought educators from across the globe to Vol State for several years now through the International Education program. They are meeting with classes and recently held a reception to talk about their home countries.

Lineo Segoete spoke to students about Lesotho. It's one of only three remaining kingdoms in Africa.

"Isn't it pretty far south of the equator?" asked student Cameron Pugh.

"Yes, and the whole country is about two million people," Segoete replied.

Elizeo Joseph Odu of South Sudan explained that his relatively new country is still experiencing much unrest. When asked about the educational system there it becomes apparent why this program is so valuable to Vol State students, faculty and staff.

"The government doesn't have much money to pay for teachers," Odu said. "We have parent-teacher associations and they run the schools. We always work with the communities when it comes to the schools."

Those unique perspectives can help enlarge our perspective on education in other nations. In return, the Humphrey's Fellows learn about the American educational system.

"The teacher training and leadership information is quite interesting," Odu said. "Those are my primaries area of practice."

The Humphrey's Fellows come from eight different countries this year: South Sudan, Lesotho, Jamaica, Pakistan, Morocco, Russia, El Salvador, Venezuela, Malawi and Botswana. Vol State is an associate campus for the program. Look for more events later this year.

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