College of Education > News and Publications > News Items Folder > Partnerships with Other Universities Yield First Graduates

Partnerships with Other Universities Yield First Graduates

The Penn State College of Education has created two distinct partnerships with Xavier University of Louisiana and the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez to allow graduate students from those universities to take advantage of programs and courses at Penn State. The first students to benefit from these programs are now completing their degrees.

By Michelle Roche

Several years ago the Penn State College of Education, in a collaborative program initiated by its Department of Curriculum and Instruction (C&I), created two distinct partnerships with Xavier University of Louisiana and the University of Puerto Rico-Mayaguez to allow graduate students from those universities to take advantage of programs and courses at Penn State. The first students to benefit from these programs are now completing their degrees.

Shanna Graves was recruited through the C&I Department and the Xavier University partnership. When she graduates in December with her Ph.D., she will be the first student to graduate through the program. Three more students in the program are expected to graduate sometime in 2008.

Since 2002, members of the Department of English at University of Puerto Rico in Mayaguez have been enrolled in the Curriculum and Instruction program to pursue doctoral degrees. 

Two students in this partnership have now successfully completed their programs. Rosita Rivera received her degree in 2006, while Rosa Roman is graduating in December 2007. 

Rivera believes that the experience changed her as a person and has taught her to view research and education from a more critical perspective. “Penn State and the Mayaguez program opened my eyes to new possibilities,” said Rivera.  “It was one of the greatest experiences of my life.”

College of Education Dean David H. Monk believes the program to be a great opportunity for the students. “This is a great initiative and it is wonderful to see the students reaching the completion of their degrees,” said Monk. 

Maria Schmidt, director of multicultural programs, adds, “These partnerships bring further possibilities of collaborations and initiatives.  A good example is the new Summer Puerto Rico Institute that provides elementary education and world language students the opportunity to learn and experience the culture, language and educational system in Puerto Rico.”

For more information, contact Schmidt at mjs125@psu.edu, or call 814-865-0904.