Photo from Creative Commons license, Flickr user RIBI Image Library.

Illinois State University is one of 18 universities in the United States hosting Brazilian teachers though a program co-sponsored by the Institute of International Education (IIE).

A group of 23 Brazilian high school English teachers is at Illinois State for an intensive six-week English language and professional development training program.

The cohort of teachers at Illinois State is part of an inaugural group of 540 high school English teachers in IIE’s new Brazilian English Teachers Program. Over the next three years, the program will bring more than 1,000 teachers per year to the U.S. for intensive language and teacher training. The teachers hosted by Illinois State are taking classes at the University’s English Language Institute and making site visits to area elementary and secondary schools.

“This program will directly impact English language teaching in Brazil,” said Kasia Stadnik, director of the English Language Institute. “The teachers are enhancing their English language proficiency while they are here and also learning about methods and materials they can use in their classrooms at home.”

The Brazilian English Teachers Program is a combined effort of IIE, the Fulbright Commission in Brazil, the U.S. Embassy in Brazil and CAPES, a foundation within Brazil’s Ministry of Education.

Illinois State is also a partner institution in the Science Without Borders-Brazil initiative, a scholarship program for Brazilian students focusing on the STEM disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics. A cohort of 21 Brazilian students is attending Illinois State for one academic year before completing degrees at their home institutions. As part of a larger effort to promote higher education, the Brazilian government has committed to sending 75,000 students abroad to study at the world’s best universities over the next four years through Science Without Borders.