John Shiffert: Clayton State Expands Collaboration with Daejeon Health Sciences

Clayton State Expands its Academic Collaborations with Daejeon Health Sciences University

The on-going relationship between Clayton State University of Morrow, Ga., and Daejeon Health Sciences University of Daejeon, South Korea, continues to flourish and expand following a visit to South Korea earlier this month by Clayton State University President Dr. Thomas Hynes and Dean of the College of Health Dr. Lisa Eichelberger.

The initial Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between Clayton State and Daejeon Health Sciences University, signed in March 2013, served as a future general framework for inter-institutional cooperation between Clayton State and Daejeon Health Sciences. Hynes’ and Eichelberger’s most recent visit moves the future more into the present and puts in place the details for a visit to Clayton State by a Daejeon nurse cohort in July. In addition, Hynes and Eichelberger also finalized a MOU for beginning explorations for future shared activities with the colleges of business from both institutions.

“It opens the door to expanded academic collaborations – student and faculty exchanges, joint teaching or collaborative degree programs, Korean student enrollment – between Clayton State and foreign institutions that have compatible health curriculum,” notes Hynes of the Morrow-Daejeon relationship.

According to Eichelberger, 15 Daejeon pre-nursing and nursing students and one nursing faculty member, Dr. Cho Meekyung, professor of Nursing, will be studying at Clayton State for four weeks in July 2014, under the tutelage of Dr. Sue Odom and Professor Barbara Wiggs. During that time, says Eichelberger, the Daejeon cohort will learn English as second language and medical terminology and will experience health care in area hospitals and community agencies such as Grady Medical Center.

However, the Daejeon visit will also provide Clayton State students with cross-cultural learning opportunities. Eichelberger emphasizes that students from Clayton State’s Student Nurses Association will be meeting with the Daejeon cohort to compare experiences about health care, cultural health practices and differences in nursing education between the U.S. and Korea.

In addition, there will also be a cultural component as the Daejeon cohort will live in Clayton State’s Laker Hall residence facility and will visit area churches, malls and social events are planned with Clayton State students. A friend of Eichelberger’s will be hosting the group at her home in Peachtree City for a pizza party and backyard swim after the group shops and visits the golf cart community during one of their weekend excursions.

“This is so they can get to know college students and experience college life in the U.S.,” explains Eichelberger, who coordinates the application of the MOU with Dr Hyen-sook Jeon, dean, School of Nursing and Bongnam Lee, director, International Programs, of Daejeon Health Sciences.

Looking ahead to later in the summer, Eichelberger reports that Daejeon nursing students have already begun to apply for admission to the School of Nursing at Clayton State for the fall 2014 semester which starts in August. She notes that the Daejeon students will be entering the RN-to-BSN program led by Dr. Lynn Stover.