by Public Relations
Cedarville University education students spend their last semester of the program gaining field experience as they wrap up their degrees. Many students stay in Ohio, but each year, a number of education majors choose to cross the oceans with Interaction International to complete their student teaching requirements in foreign countries.
Interaction International is the supporting organization of Christian College Teacher Education Coordinating Council (CCTECC). CCTECC places students from schools belonging to the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU) in countries overseas with the goal of supporting international schools and teaching kids who are growing up in a new culture — one different from the culture of their parents. The group also provides student teachers with a pre-experience weekend to orient them to living and teaching in a foreign country.
Student teaching in another country not only gives students the important teaching experience that all education majors receive, but it also provides them with invaluable cross-cultural perspectives and ministry opportunities. This spring, Jonathan Storch, a senior multi-age music education major, not only taught in the classroom but also accompanied some of his high school students from the Alliance Academy International in Quito, Ecuador, on a short-term missions trip into the jungle for nearly a week. The experience allowed Storch to serve with the global Church and gain a broader perspective in regards to other Christians.
“I have loved blending missions with schooling,” says Storch. “This experience has opened my eyes to the great needs that can be found in the most unexpected places.”
Overseas experience provides personal growth for the teachers as well. By the time Cedarville students are teaching internationally, they have already been prepared by field experiences in Ohio. Teaching internationally allows students to gain cross-cultural perspectives and self-confidence.
“I’ve learned countless lessons about humility, flexibility, love and teaching through my experience,” says senior Lydia Briggs, who taught at the Country Day School in Costa Rica. “I am confident that this is a memory I will treasure for the rest of my life.”
Students also grow spiritually as they both teach and learn throughout the student teaching program. “I feel like most of my growth has actually been in my walk with God,” says senior Kara Harder, a language arts education major who taught at Wuhan Yangtze International School in China. “He has taught me how to give Him control and shown me what it means to live with total reliance.”
Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University attracts 3,200 undergraduate, graduate, and online students to more than 100 areas of study. Cedarville is a Christ-centered learning community recognized nationally for rigorous academic programs, strong graduation and retention rates, accredited professional and health science offerings, and leading student satisfaction ratings. Visit the University online at www.cedarville.edu.