Urbana University, a branch campus of Franklin University, is welcoming its newest group of BlueHorizon English as a Second Language (ESL) Immersion Program students. These 17 students and accompanying faculty member will spend the next 15 weeks in a unique, international immersion experience as part of Urbana University’s partnership with Hohai University Wentian College (HUWC) in China.
Launched in 2017 with 25 students from the National Technological Institute at Misantla, the program draws upon more than two decades of expertise developed at Franklin University, serving thousands of students through its ESL courses. Coursework is designed to offer the benefit of going beyond customary reading and writing skills by helping students master the language skills necessary for listening and speaking in the classroom environment.
Unlike the 2017 group that focused on STEM coursework, HUWC students will participate in Urbana University’s American Business, Language, and Culture program, and will take courses in Marketing and Accounting created through a collaboration between business and ESL faculty. Students will visit small businesses and cultural settings, participate in team-building exercises and attend leadership conferences to apply their newly acquired language and professional skills.
By living on the UU campus,, students will benefit from curriculum expertise combined with traditional university campus life, creating the opportunity for students to interact with Urbana’s other students living on campus. Through these various program activities and residential experiences, students receive a true cultural and linguistic immersion experience.
“I am excited about the arrival of our immersion students from China because they play an important role in the growth of our university,” said Dr. Christopher Washington, Executive Vice President, Urbana University. “Experience tells us that not only do visiting students learn about our diverse culture and institutions, Urbana University’s students also develop cross-cultural skills and global fluency as they interact with and learn from these international students. One of the best features of our program is that students will likely make new friends that may last for a lifetime.”
Through efforts such as this, Urbana University can fulfill its obligation to train a new workforce across the globe to meet growing demands in international business, diplomacy, innovation.