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SU Seidel School Dean, Faculty Present at International Education Symposium

SALISBURY, MD---The issues facing education reform in China are not altogether different than those in the United States, according to Dr. Dennis Pataniczek, dean of the Samuel W. and Marilyn C. Seidel School of Education and Professional Studies at Salisbury University.

Pataniczek and SU faculty were invited to present at the fourth annual International Symposium on Teacher Education at Huzhou University, China. This year’s theme was “Teacher Education: International Horizons and Local Practice.” Along with the University of Alabama, SU was one of only two U.S. institutions—and one of only four non-Chinese schools—represented at the event.

“When American professors go there, they are regarded as foreign experts,” said Pataniczek, who spoke on “Teacher Education for Rural Schools.”

Joining him were Drs. Deborah Mathews of the Social Work Department, Douglas DeWitt of the Education Specialties Department (making his third consecutive conference appearance) and Hongzhuan “Sam” Song, director of SU’s English Language Institute.

Mathews spoke on “Teaching in a Blended Environment: Bringing the University to Students Rather Than Students to the University.” DeWitt presented “Issues in Rural Education: Learning From the Past; Dealing With the Present; Looking to the Future.” Song spoke on “Transforming Education in the Internet Age: Going From ‘Being’ to ‘Becoming.’”

Following the conference, the SU group traveled to Anqing, China, to visit SU students Daniel McElwain of Easton, MD, and Blake Lovelace of Capitol Heights, MD, studying abroad through a partnership between SU and Anqing Teachers College. While there, Pataniczek spoke to students on the process for becoming a teacher in the United States. DeWitt and Song repeated their conference presentations for students and Dr. Mathews talked about what it like to be a social worker in the United States.

“The discussion drew lots of interest—and many of them were interested in SU,” Pataniczek said.

Anqing currently has three students studying abroad in Salisbury through the exchange program: seniors Zhou Qian and Gao Xuan, and graduate student Wang Yang. Pataniczek said he hoped some of the students he spoke to in China would join them in the future.

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