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The Woods
Since the early 90s, WilliamWoods has offered a unique, international
experience for as many as 85 Taiwanese students each year.
The program has given more than 700 adults from Taiwan the
opportunity to study and earn a degree in a concentrated,
12- to 18-month program.
WWU's international program offers bachelor of science in
management (BSM), master of business administration (MBA)
and master of education (M.Ed.) degrees.
When students frst arrive at The Woods in August, they go
through an intensive, four-week, English language program that
helps develop listening, speaking, writing and vocabulary skills.
They continue with an ESL (English as a Second Language) class
through the year. In addition, writing labs help them with their
projects, presentations and research papers.
WWU also provides academic assistants to help Taiwanese
students understand course requirements and assignments. This
is one of the distinguishing factors that sets WWU’s program
apart. Hui-Yun Chen cites other reasons to come to The Woods.
An elementary school teacher in Taiwan, she earned an M.Ed.
at WWU in 2004.
“William Woods provided the exact education I needed; the
program is well-balanced with specifc courses that helped me
meet the necessary [teacher certifcation/education] requirements
in Taiwan and helped me gain a good foundation for entering the
Ph.D. art education program at MU.”
Betsy Tutt, WWU professor of education, said, “This
administration has defnitely worked to offer specifc courses
that students need to enter the workforce when they go back
The Taiwanese are attracted to William Woods for other
reasons— Fulton offers a safe environment with a low cost of
living, yet it is close to larger cities. In addition, many of the
teachers are professional educators or businesspersons with
practical experience. Chen says the professors’ personable
attitude and manner make WWU a great place to learn.
“Here your relationship with your professor is like a friendship.
Also, many of the courses focus on teamwork instead of
individual work," said Chen.
Chun-Lin Kuo is a current student at WWU. As a former teacher
in Taiwan, he appreciates the teaching style at William Woods.
“Professors in Taiwan are usually serious. They don't expect
students to challenge them. They want students to just sit and listen.
On the contrary, professors here expect students to speak out in
the class. They even encourage students to point out mistakes” said
Kuo. "Students can speak their minds, and that provides a good
learning environment."
He added, “I want to take back to Taiwan this way of teaching.
The professors here are so open minded. They listen to me
patiently, although I don't speak English well.”
Sherry McCarthy, vice president and academic dean, says
that WWU is always working to improve the Taiwanese program.
“We have really added a lot to the intensive ESL experience before
they start classes and to the classes themselves,” she said. “We have
also increased the interaction between the Taiwanese and the rest of
the campus. Having these students on our campus enhances cultural
diversity for everyone.”
During the past year, for example, faculty and staff celebrated
Chinese New Year with the Taiwanese students with typical dishes,
decorations and traditions. Last fall, Taiwanese students visited a
corn maze, celebrated Octoberfest and went “trick-or-treating.”
“The goal is to create activities so these students experience
American culture,” explained Tutt.
After teaching Taiwanese students for 10 years, she says, “These
students are hard-working, polite and are just a joy to teach.”
By Tara Boehl ’09
Taiwanese Students Explore
American Life
Taiwanese students trick-or-treat throughout Fulton campus offces