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Opening Ceremony of Ten-Week Columbia University Program on Instruction and Leadership Development for Faculty Members of Shenzhen University Successfully Launched Last Month

Develop. Grow. Succeed.

The opening ceremony on March 16th, hosted by Sheng Yan, the academic committee chair of GEC Academy, marked the initiation of the Ten-Week Program on Instruction and Leadership Development designed for Shenzhen University (Shengzhen U). This program lasts for 10 weeks from March 16th to May 25th, with 2 online sessions a week, and a total of 45 Shenzhen U teachers participating in this program.

Jointly organized by the Center on Chinese Education at Teachers College, Columbia University and GEC Academy, the original intention of this program was to effectively improve teachers’ comprehensive skills in adult learning, leadership development, and teaching capacity development, thereby promoting the comprehensive development of these faculty’s theoretical knowledge and teaching capacity through ten weeks.

On March 16th, all the teacher participants, as well as Professor Jianwu Jiang, Dr. Henan Cheng and Sheng Yan, attended the opening ceremony. Professor Jianwu Jiang, Deputy Director of the International Exchange and Cooperation Department at Shenzhen U, expressed his gratitude to the teachers for their support and active application and expectations for the progression of this program. Dr. Henan Cheng, Deputy Director of the Center on Chinese Education at Teachers College, Columbia University, delivered a speech on behalf of the Center. Not only did she show her appreciation to the teachers who overcame the great challenges and participated in the program under the epidemic, but provided a detailed introduction to the history of the Teachers College at Columbia University, and the historical origins in relation to Modern Education in China.


Professor Jiang and Dr. Cheng were giving speech during the orientation.

The opening ceremony also offered a detailed introduction to the instructors, program process, scoring standards, and study platform. At the end of it, the teachers introduced themselves and shared their original intentions for registration to each other.

After the successful opening ceremony, the first session of this program officially started at 8:00 p.m. on March 19th, which was led by Dr. Donna Murdoch, an associate professor who specializes in digital classroom construction and online teaching research at Teachers College of Columbia University. In the class, 45 teachers were divided into 9 groups to discuss learning themes, cooperation principles and common goals, and share their speeches with great passion.


Professor Murdoch holds the first lecture for the program.


First group picture taken at the end of the first class session.

With the full support and cooperation of all parties, this ten-week program was successfully initiated. The Teachers College of Columbia University and GEC Academy have been preparing for this program for half a year and we are highly confident with the harvests of this program, and we believe that this will be an opportunity to practice the “learn by doing and do by learning” in online teaching, with the methods and concepts brought by the Teachers College of Columbia University.“A single spark can start a prairie fire”, we have faith that the teachers will play a role in teaching, helping and leading to comprehensively promote the full English teaching ability of other teachers at Shenzhen U in the future.

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