Grenadian teacher learns best practices and ideas that will help more youth reach college

On a mission to empower the youth of Grenada through education, secondary school teacher Carlene Perryman is learning about the myriad networks and services at Wayne State that support a student’s academic success.

Perryman is a 2017 Professional Fellow through the Young Leaders of the Americas Initiative (YLAI). The fellows were brought to Michigan by Global Ties Detroit, which administers this program on behalf of the U.S. Department of State and Meridian International Center.

The Office for International Programs (OIP) collaborates with Global Ties on these exchanges as part of a regional network that promotes Detroit’s culture and commerce to emerging international leaders during their stays. 

Enrollment Management hosted Perryman, arranging for visits with unit leaders and staff across various departments. Perryman co-founded the Help Educate Our Nation project (HEON), which provides two-year scholarships for Grenadian students to attend the country’s community college or skills center. She hopes to employ many of the best practices she learns at WSU when she returns to HEON. 

Dawn Medley, associate vice president of enrollment management, says hosting a fellow provides a learning opportunity for both Perryman and the WSU team.

“As an enrollment team, we spend our days working with students at all levels,” Medley says. “We wanted to host Carlene because it would be a valuable cultural exchange and perhaps assist her as she continues to grow the educational opportunities for her students.  

“It’s always about creating richer experiences for everyone. It’s what we do.”

While education is free through secondary school on the tiny Caribbean island of 108,000, tuition to attend college is insurmountable for most students.

HEON was launched in 2015 by a team of young professionals and raises monetary support through social events and the sale of branded merchandise.  The program serves five first- and second-year students, and recently, partners have come forward to sponsor more. 

Perryman’s YLAI fellowship will provide additional tools to strengthen the project’s presence and ability to provide aid.

“While the size of (Wayne State and our community college) varies greatly, we share a vision that a degree is important to a student’s success in life and the health of a region’s economy, so I am excited that there are ideas I can apply to our project,” she says.

The Office of International Programs leads Wayne State’s global engagement by creating opportunities that foster international education and research, facilitate the exchange of individuals and ideas that promote global competencies and citizenship, and provide resources that support the expansion of the university’s global agenda.

 

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