Dr. Diana Dudzik: “It has been my privilege to work at ULIS!”
Among the foreign specialists at ULIS, Dr. Diana Dudzik is one of the most beloved people by students, lecturers and staff .
Recently, ULIS Media has had a quick interview with her to talk about her meaningful experiences at University of Languages & International Studies – VNU.
Q: Can you introduce yourself?
A: My name is Diana Dudzik. I’m an English teacher educator and curriculum developer from the US. I earned my PhD in Education, Curriculum and Instruction: Second Languages and Cultures Education from the University of Minnesota. I’ve taught elementary, secondary and university level English-as-a-second-language and pre-service teacher education courses in the US, and MA teacher education in Vietnam. I’ve conducted teacher development, evaluated and drafted curriculum, and done international research in Vietnam, Laos, and Djibouti.
Q: Why Vietnam?
A: When I was a young ESL teacher in Minnesota, I was hired to teach English to one Vietnamese high school student from Nha Trang. He later became a part of our family. Hai missed his country very much, and often said that “American are rich in things, but Vietnamese are rich in relationships”. In 1992, my husband Jerry visited Vietnam with a small international non-government organization (iNGO) called Resource Exchange International (REI). He attended English classes throughout the country, and came home and said, “we could help”, so in 1994, we packed up our family and moved to Hanoi with REI to teach English to MOET staff for a year. We returned to Vietnam again with REI from 2001 to 2004 and led a 3-year teacher development project at Hanoi University.
Q: Why ULIS?
A: After completing my doctorate in Minnesota, I spent a year fighting cancer. When I was well enough, we returned to Vietnam to visit friends. At that time, I asked several colleagues about opportunities to contribute in Vietnam again. The National Foreign Language 2020 Project was just beginning at that time, and our friend and colleague was the executive director of the new project. He asked me to draft English teacher standards, He also introduced me to Dr. Nguyen Hoa and Dr. Do Tuan Minh at ULIS, and we collaborated on the standards. That was the beginning of many fruitful years of collaboration with ULIS.
In 2010, Jerry and I moved back to Vietnam where I was a Senior English Language Fellow through a US State Department program. From 2010-2013, I worked with ULIS/VNU and the National Foreign Language 2020 Project. I evaluated the Fast Track Teacher Education program, led a team to evaluate and improve the national English teacher education curriculum, led a “multiple streams” course development project, and was the key author of Vietnam’s English Teacher Competencies Framework.
I returned to ULIS for the 2016-2017 academic year as a Fulbright Scholar where I’ve led a national team to draft blended (online and face-to-face) English teacher development curriculum and pilot courses. This program aims create a national menu of high quality professional development courses for Vietnam’s 80,000 public school English teachers.
Q: What are your memories of ULIS?
A: I have many fond memories of my work at ULIS. I had meaningful collaboration with Dr. Nguyen Hoa and Dr. Do Tuan Minh on the English teacher competencies framework (ETCF) and ULIS’s role as a regional foreign language resource center. I had a great time interviewing Fast Track teachers and students for an evaluation of the Fast Track curriculum. I enjoyed observing the creativity of the teachers and the enthusiastic participation of the students in the FELTE classes I observed. I also have fond memories of the significant work we conducted together as I worked with teams of qualified and dedicated FELTE teacher educators to evaluate the national English teacher education curriculum, FLCESC staff as we developed three new “contextual” courses, and with faculty and staff from across the university in our most recent project of developing blended teacher development courses.
Q: What message do you have for our students and staff at ULIS?
A: The ULIS motto of “creating opportunities together” says it all! So do the three words on the sign in front of Building A1 this year: responsibility, opportunity, community.
ULIS is a very special teaching and learning community. It has been my privilege to work with you all. Wishing the entire ULIS community the very best in the future!