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University Relations

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March 4, 2009
Contact: William Tsutsui, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences, (785) 864-3551.

KU names 15 Kansas Asia Scholars for 2009

LAWRENCE — Fifteen students at the University of Kansas who have been selected as 2009 Kansas Asia Scholars are preparing to study abroad May 22-June 13 in China.

The scholars will spend two weeks studying Chinese language, culture and history at Huazhong Normal University in Wuhan, China. A third week will be spent traveling and viewing sites such as the Great Wall of China and the Forbidden City in Beijing. They will be accompanied by Sheree Willis, executive director of KU’s Confucius Institute.

Funded by the Freeman Foundation of New York and Stowe, Vt., the program is designed for students who intend to become elementary or secondary school teachers through the undergraduate teacher education program in KU’s School of Education. To be eligible, students must have a grade-point average of 2.75 and be enrolled in or preparing to enter a teacher education program for subject areas that can include teaching about China.

While they are in China, the scholars will complete two three-credit-hour undergraduate courses in elementary conversational Chinese and East Asian history taught at Huazhong Normal University. After returning to Kansas, the KU students will create service-learning projects to share their experiences in China with students in elementary and secondary schools.

A partner university of the Confucius Institute at KU, Huazhong Normal University is a comprehensive university with about 20,000 students with a teacher preparation program considered among the best in China. It is known for its top academic programs in education, physics and history and its national-level research centers in modern Chinese history and Chinese linguistics and language pedagogy.

Wuhan, with a population of about 9.7 million, is China’s fourth-largest city. Located on the Yangzi River in central China, Wuhan is the capital of Hubei Province. The city includes three districts — Wuchang, Hankou and Hanyang. The Wuchang district has more than 20 colleges and universities including Huazhong Normal University. Hankou, one of China’s oldest commercial centers, has stylish shopping centers and is considered the financial heart of central China. The Hanyang district houses some of China’s most important Buddhist temples as well as an industrial center with major manufacturing facilities for Budweiser, Coca-Cola and Peugeot products.

Bill Tsutsui, associate dean for international studies in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and professor of history, is the director of the Undergraduate Asia Studies Initiative, which includes the Kansas Asia Scholars program, and interim director of the Center for Global and International Studies.

Kansas Asia Scholars are listed below by hometown, major, level in school, parents’ names and high school.

CLOUD COUNTY
From Clyde 66938
Jamie Lynn George, senior in middle-level education, daughter of Michael and Barbara George; Clifton-Clyde High School.

DOUGLAS COUNTY
From Lawrence 66047
Christina Marie Eoannou, junior in elementary education, daughter of George and Deb Eoannou; Lawrence High School.

From Lawrence 66049
Nicholas G. Martinez, senior in elementary education, son of John Martinez; Lawrence Free State High School.

FINNEY COUNTY
From Garden City 67846
Ashlea Ann Orrell, senior in unified early childhood education, daughter of Richard and Janet Orrell; Garden City Senior High School.

FORD COUNTY
From Dodge City 67801
Ashley Kay Million, master’s student in the fifth-year education licensure program, daughter of Mike and Brenda Million; bachelor’s degree in secondary-level education from KU, fall 2008; Dodge City Senior High School.

JOHNSON COUNTY
From Lenexa 66219
Ashley Elizabeth Biondo, senior in unified early childhood education, daughter of John and Deborah Biondo; Shawnee Mission West High School, Overland Park.

From Mission 66202
Thomas M. Myers, senior in foreign language education, son of Paul and Janet Myers; Shawnee Mission North High School, Overland Park.

From Olathe 66062
Amanda Rose Riss, junior preparing to study secondary education, daughter of Michael and Donna Riss; Olathe South High School.

Jenna Elise Sutter, senior in unified early childhood education, daughter of Michael and Mary Sutter; Olathe South High School.

From Overland Park 66213
Jennifer Ann Mayer, senior in foreign language education, daughter of Patrice A. Mayer; Blue Valley Northwest High School.

From Stilwell 66085
Torre Christopher Norton, senior in elementary education, son of Chris and Denise Norton; Blue Valley West High School, Overland Park.

LEAVENWORTH COUNTY
From Basehor 66007
Amy D. Rousselo, master’s student in the fifth-year education licensure program, daughter of Thomas and Tammy Rousselo; bachelor’s degree in secondary-level education from KU, fall 2008; Basehor-Linwood High School.

SEDGWICK COUNTY
From Derby 67037
Megan Nicole Gerwick, senior in English and secondary-level education, daughter of Frank and Deborah Gerwick; Derby High School.

ILLINOIS
From Burr Ridge 60527
Alexandra Ann Chebuhar, senior in unified early childhood education, daughter of Thomas and Nancy Chebuhar; Lyons Township High School North, La Grange, Ill.

WASHINGTON
From Sumner 98390
Hannah Elizabeth McMacken, senior in elementary education, daughter of Eileen Riordan; Auburn Riverside High School, Auburn, Wash.

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