Program revised

Queen’s-Fudan exchange transfers to new department

The exchange will not see any dramatic changes this year, LLCU acting department head says.
The exchange will not see any dramatic changes this year, LLCU acting department head says.
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Supplied by Andriana Hnatykiw

The Queen’s-Fudan exchange program is seeing a cultural shift.

The program, originally offered through the department of global development studies (DEVS), will now be administered by the department of languages, literatures and cultures (LLCU), in order to attract more students.

DEVS began offering the semester-long exchange to students eight years ago as a means to promote cross-cultural learning in development work.

It combined in-class learning at Fudan University in Shanghai with internships at local NGO’s.

The program was acclaimed by the government of the People’s Republic of China as a Model Bilingual Education Program in 2009.

Discussions on whether to transfer the program began in September, according to Donato Santeramo, LLCU acting department head. The department, which was established in 2011, will administer the 2013 program.

Part of the reasoning behind the transfer to LLCU is the department’s capacity to broaden the program, through a focus on language and culture.

Prior to the shift, the program typically drew students from DEVS, history and political studies.

“The idea is to widen the scope of the program by focusing on culture, language and acquisition,” Santeramo said.

“We hope that this program will enhance the department and the University’s momentum for internationalization.”

This year will mark the beginning of a transition period for LLCU, which will negotiate with Fudan University an agreement for restructuring course and work models.

The process will be finalized in the summer.

Queen’s courses offered this year at Fudan will remain similar to previous years, Santoramo added.

These include Introduction to Chinese History and Culture, Shanghai and Globalization, an optional introduction to Modern Chinese Language and field research linked to a student’s home department.

“This year there isn’t any major change to be brought about as a result,” he said. “We’ve practically almost left almost everything, except one course we modified a little bit.”

It has yet to be confirmed whether internships and work placements will still be offered through the exchange, Santeramo said, adding that this will be determined in the negotiating process between Queen’s and Fudan.

Approximately 15 students participate in the exchange each semester, a number Santeramo said he hopes will rise following the departmental shift.

“We’re just hoping to widen it even more and offer more possibilities and the number of courses that are going to be offered,” he said. “It’s more adding to the program rather than changing it.”

Malcolm Bird, ArtSci ’13, who went on the exchange last year as a DEVS student, said the expansion is a positive thing.

“It was always open to all students but it might have been less appealing to them if it were offered through development studies,” he said. “The fact that it’s more research and learning experience is an overall good thing.”

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