Marquette, Mich.--Northern Michigan University has extended its global outreach efforts. NMU President David Haynes recently traveled to Seoul, South Korea, where he signed memoranda of understanding with two institutions: Seoul National University of Science and Technology and Hankuk University of Foreign Studies. This builds upon the previously signed agreement with Myongji University.
Haynes was accompanied by Provost Paul Lang (left) and Sook Wilkinson (second from right), an NMU trustee who was born in Seoul (her mother still lives there), graduated magna cum laude from the city’s Ewha Womans University and speaks fluent Korean.
“The schools were impressed we had a Korean-American on our board who would take the time to travel there to help Northern,” Haynes said. “We identified four universities, met with their staffs to compare what we offer and what they offer and came away with two signed agreements. We will continue to pursue partnerships with the others. The Seoul Institute of Arts is unique and has a lot of the same programs as we offer in art and design and in communications and performance studies. Most of the country’s top movie stars and playwrights went there. We spent a full day with the head of the communications department, who is a Northern grad who came here on an exchange program.
“Student and faculty exchanges are certainly possible, but we also want to move beyond exchanges to actual degree programs. Maybe two-plus-two programs where Korean students could spend the first two years there and finish up the last two years here, receiving a Northern degree. If students are here more than a semester or two, they’re more connected to U.S. students and it enhances diversity on campus.”
Haynes said South Korea is one of the international recruiting markets he has targeted. The others are China, Brazil and Dubai.
In October, NMU hosted Mohamed Rashed Al Hameli, a senior economic adviser with the Abu Dhabi Council for Economic Development. Al Hameli was invited to the Marquette area to discuss the possibility of NMU collaborating with United Arab Emirates’ institutions to offer courses and programs in the capital of Abu Dhabi and other UAE locations. He also met with business and community leaders. Haynes will be traveling to Al Hameli’s homeland in February.
“We’re very excited about the opportunities that may be available for NMU programs in Abu Dhabi, and we appreciate Mr. Al Hameli traveling to the Upper Peninsula to learn more about our university,” said Haynes.