October 18, 2016 at 11:15 am

Sister Learning Communities Visit Libby’s Pumpkin Patch

Global Studies Program learning community meet with the OPIE learning community at Libby's Pumpkin Patch.

Global Studies Program learning community meet with the OPIE learning community at Libby’s Pumpkin Patch.

It is the second year in a row that students from the Global Studies Program learning community meet with the Ohio Program of Intensive English learning community to create a unique partnership.

Linking the two groups has proven to be a great collaboration and integration practice, started in 2015 by Cat Cutcher and Tetyana Dovbnya, the instructors of the respective learning communities. Students from both classes are introduced to each other in order to share cultures and their first-year student experiences, while working toward a common final project on the comparison of education systems across the world. During the project, domestic students guide international students through the nuances of the U.S. education system, while international students share their unique perspectives in return. Both groups benefit from such a first-hand purposeful intercultural communication.

Undoubtedly, there is more to having such sister learning communities than just a common academic challenge. The partnering students, together with the learning community leaders and instructors, also share some fun cultural experiences outside of the classroom. Recently, they all went to the Libby’s Pumpkin Patch near Albany, Ohio. No matter the age, gender, nationality, or university status, everybody was able to enjoy tasting pumpkin ice-cream, a hayride, figuring out a corn maze, and even trying out a hillside slide. International students were especially fascinated by the opportunity to pick pumpkins for decorations right at the field.

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