Engaging Across Cultures

A professional development series for international and domestic graduate and professional students at the University of Iowa

This program offered by International Student and Scholar Services extends the success of our Building Our Global Community series for staff and faculty by creating a special series tailored to graduate and professional students at the University of Iowa. Engaging Across Cultures is a non-academic, professional development certificate program that creates an opportunity for UI graduate and professional students to learn more about fostering an intercultural campus while honing skills that will carry into the future workplace. Content will include subject matter of interest for both domestic as well as international students. Participants will earn a certificate by completing a series of sessions (a required introductory session + 2 electives), which may also be included in a professional development section on a résumé or CV.

Through the introductory session and specialized sessions, participants in Engaging Across Cultures will learn:

  • skills to recognize their own culture(s) and how their cultural lens influences their interactions
  • techniques for developing and applying intercultural skills in academia, including in the classroom, lab, or research group
  • strategies to enhance intercultural communication and understand the needs of second language learners
  • skills to navigate cultural expectations in the job search process
  • strategies to utilize in the professional context outside higher education
  • information on specific countries/culture group

Core Session

Introduction to Engaging Across Cultures

Wednesday, October 5, 2022 | 3:30-5:00 pm | Zoom

Instructors: Taivna Mills, International Services Associate, and Brandon Paulson, Assistant Director, International Student and Scholar Services

Description:

This introduction session will introduce the Engaging Across Cultures certificate program and share an overview of the international student population at the University of Iowa. Participants will have opportunity to learn about culture and the cultural adjustment experienced when living in a new culture. Participants will examine their own cultural lens and how it influences their interactions.

Participants who attend this session will learn:

  • skills to recognize their own culture(s) and how their cultural lens influences their interactions
  • changes occurring when living in a new culture and strategies to assist with the transition
  • strategies to enhance intercultural communication

Elective Sessions

Developing Your Intercultural Insight

Thursday, October 20 & 27, 2022 | 3:30-5:00pm | Zoom

Instructors: Pauline Beazer James, Senior Advisor, International Student and Scholar Services; Amy Alice Chastain, Associate Professor of Instruction, Outreach Coordinator, ESL Programs; Shuhui Lin, Coordinator of International Student Support and Engagement; International Student and Scholar Services/Multicultural and International Student Support and Engagement; Brandon Paulson, Assistant Director, International Student and Scholar Services

Description:

In this two-part session, participants will learn about developing their intercultural insights by exploring the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI). The IDI generates an individual profile of “worldview orientation to difference,” and is based on the research of Dr. Milton Bennett and Dr. Mitchell Hammer. Participants will need to complete the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) before the session. Participants will have an opportunity to sign-up and attend a follow-up 1 hour meeting with a trained IDI facilitator to receive feedback on their individual profile and discuss their individual development plan for intercultural growth.

Participants who attend this session will learn:

  • how to describe the intercultural growth continuum and the stages of intercultural development
  • where the IDI indicates they are on the intercultural growth continuum
  • how to develop a personal plan for their intercultural growth to be able to work more effectively across cultures

 

Navigating Intercultural Conflicts

Monday, October 31 & November 7, 2022 | 3:30-5:00pm | Zoom

Instructors: Pauline Beazer James, Senior Advisor, International Student and Scholar Services; Shuhui Lin, Coordinator of International Student Support and Engagement; International Student and Scholar Services/Multicultural and International Student Support and Engagement; Brandon Paulson, Assistant Director, International Student and Scholar Services

Description:

In this two-part interactive session, you will learn about the four intercultural conflict styles. You will discover your preferred cultural approach for resolving conflict and that of others by completing the Intercultural Conflict Style (ICS) inventory developed by Dr. Mitchell Hammer. In addition, there will be opportunities to apply ICS concepts in practice through discussion and case studies.  

Participants in this session will be able to:

  • describe the four styles of the ICS 
  • identify their personal preferred conflict style and how others approach navigating conflicts  
  • discuss potential application in work and home settings  

 

Engaging ESL Learners Across Disciplines

Wednesday, November 2, 2022 | 3:30-4:45pm | Zoom

Instructors: Ryan Kaduce, Associate Professor of Instruction, ESL Programs and Anastasia Williams, Ph.D., Assistant Director, Center for Teaching

Description:

This session will focus on how to consider and include the perspective of students with English as an additional language in all classrooms. We will invite participants to reflect on their own experiences to inform our conversation and discuss how to accommodate the needs of diverse learner backgrounds. 

Participants in this session will learn:

  • teaching strategies intended to welcome ESL learners
  • techniques for giving transparent feedback to all students
  • inclusive assignment and learning activity design

 

Culture in Academia

Wednesday, November 30, 2022 | 3:00-4:00pm | Zoom

Instructors: Lisa Kelly, Ph.D., Assistant Director for Graduate Student Success & Development, and Morgan Wolff, Grad Success Fellowship and Grant Writing Graduate Assistant, Graduate College

Description:

The session will create an opportunity for graduate and professional students to learn more about fostering an intercultural campus at their colleges and departments while honing skills that will carry into the future workplace. Content will include subject matter of interest which help graduate and professional students better navigate in academic settings. 

Participants who attend this session will learn:

  • skills to recognize their own culture(s) and how their cultural lens influences their interactions
  • skills to identify colleagues’ characteristics and working styles to foster effective communication
  • techniques for developing and applying intercultural skills in academia, including in the classroom, lab, or research group
  • strategies to enhance intercultural communication and understand the needs of second language learners
  • strategies to advocate for themselves in different professional settings

Participants may take sessions individually, without working toward a certificate. Successful fulfillment of Engaging Across Cultures requires completion of the introductory session and two elective sessions. Engaging Across Cultures is free of charge to participants and the program does not offer course credit for participating in it. Individuals who complete the professional development certificate program will receive a certificate and be recognized on the International Programs website.

Yuchen Liu
"Engaging Across Cultures' provided me a comfortable and open zone to share my experience related to learning, teaching, and life in Iowa as well as in the U.S. A. I appreciate this valuable opportunity provided by ISSS, allowing diverse communities to represent ourselves equally and present ourselves confidently. Also, all presenters and participants are respectful and friendly to each other, listening to others expectations and perspectives. It is worth to be mentioned that the shared ideas and experiences while brainstorming solutions is really interesting and helpful for further personal and professional development."
Yuchen Liu, Graduate College

Program Contact

Contact Brandon Paulson with questions about Engaging Across Cultures by email brandon-paulson@uiowa.edu or phone (319) 335-0335.

UI Accessibility Statement

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Brandon Paulson in advance at (319) 335-0335.