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Dr. Jeff Orr leads student group to China

Dr. Jeff Orr, director of Advising, Tutoring, Testing Disability Services, Multicultural Affairs and International Student Center (ATTIC), accompanied eight students to China earlier this month for a 10-day study-abroad program at Ningbo University in Ningbo city, Zhejiang province, China.


Two of the students – English major Toby Pope and political science major Tyler Maran – are staying an additional two weeks to provide tutoring in English for Chinese students.


A third member of the SPSU delegation, computer science major Joshua Roberts, will stay through the fall semester to take culture and language-related courses while also taking two online SPSU courses. He has received a scholarship from the Chinese government and hopes to take more courses at Ningbo University as the Chinese program develops.


The other students who participated in the trip were: Teyanna Henry (international studies), Tracey Thornton-Grigs (psychology), Yen Nguyen (architecture), Courtney Heard (health information technology) and Leah Taylor (MBA).


SPSU has long-standing partnerships with a number of universities in China for student exchange, including Ningbo, and regularly welcomes students from China. Having completed the first two years of their undergraduate program in China, these students come to SPSU for their final two years of study.


Roberts is the second American student to go to China after completing two years at SPSU. Stephen Lasseter, who is working on a degree in information technology, was the first to do so in 2008.


“I have no doubt that Joshua will benefit tremendously from this experience,” said Dr. Han Reichgelt, dean of the School of Computing and Software Engineering. “I am pleased that we may be getting closer to arranging with the various universities in China for a real student exchange, and I want to thank Joshua for his willingness to be a trail blazer.”