The SUNY Consortium Global Workforce Project (GWP) seeks to prepare undergraduate students to compete effectively in the global economy, through programs developed to enhance global understanding and requisite global workforce skills of the 21st century, including language study.
The GWP was created in 2009 as a pilot program by a team of faculty from the SUNY Campuses at Brockport and Cortland, coordinated by the Levin Institute. The project was proposed to and was subsequently funded by the U.S. Department of Education's Undergraduate International Studies and Foreign Languages Program (UISFL). The program began in August 2009 and will continue for three years.
The ambitious program, cited as one of the most complex projects funded in this division, has three main components:
- The project has designed globalization modules to strengthen the internationalization of the curriculum. In the first year, 10 faculty members developed 6-hour modules to be inserted into undergraduate general education courses. These modules cover 10 issues: Trade, Sustainability, Human Rights, Gender, Banking & Finance, Technology, National Sovereignty, Health, Demographics, and Service Organizations. In the project’s second year, faculty were selected and have recently completed a week-long curriculum workshop to integrate the modules into courses that these faculty will “pilot teach” in the coming year. The modules will be in 10 courses at Brockport and 10 at Cortland. The program aims to reach 800 students through these pilot courses. Student outcomes will be assessed by a separate assessment team, to judge the extent to which the knowledge and skill objectives have been met. In the project’s third year, the slightly modified courses will be pilot taught once again.
- The project will offer a Global Scholars Program to those students who successfully complete a minimum of 3 of the courses that include the specially designed globalization modules. The SUNY Global Scholars program will be administered by the New York City based Levin Institute and will feature additional program content that draws on the globalization-rich culture and content of New York City. Programs will be both in-person and via advanced communications technologies –- again offering an array of added learning opportunities for SUNY students.
- To encourage greater language study, the project will be offering for the first time a pilot videoconference Chinese language course. Using the expertise of Cortland’s Mandarin language program, a Cortland instructor will teach Brockport students. Slated for the upcoming academic year, the language course is already oversubscribed -- evidence of the demand for increased language programs at SUNY campuses. This program, too, will be assessed for student outcomes. If successful, the program will offer a straightforward way to expand language programs throughout the geographically disparate SUNY system, bringing language opportunities to the system’s 460,000 students.
GWP aims to give students knowledge about international affairs, encourage the development of particular skills linked with globalization, and stimulate interest in further study, including languages and international experience.
The skill areas we will assess through this pilot program:
- Knowledge of Global Issues
- Cross-Cultural Communication
Global Workforce Team
The project has over 50 faculty members and administrators at SUNY Brockport, Cortland, and the Levin Institute, including:
Thomas Moebus, Project Director, Levin
Dr. Maryalice Mazzara, Curriculum Director, Levin
Rebecca Smolar, Project Manager, Levin
Dr. Christopher Price, Campus Coordinator, Brockport
Dr. Carl Davila, Campus Coordinator, Brockport
Dr. William Skipper, Campus Coordinator, Cortland