Faculty Profile: Jason C. Cherubini
Teaching at Virginia International University (VIU) is as much a learning experience for me as it is for the students. VIU is unlike other universities where a similar mix of students sits in every class; at VIU every class is different. By having to adjust and modify the lectures every semester it ensures that the material is always fresh, and I am forced to find multiple ways to explain material to best suit the different cultural learning styles.
Teaching in a mixed culture classroom allows students the rare opportunity to not only see how one culture views things differently, but how many cultures approach problems. By being faced with this challenge early, students gain the ability to work better as a team, especially outside of their traditional comfort zone.
Students should take advantage of their time in the classroom, but also all of the extracurricular opportunities available to them. By going above and beyond the classroom students will get the most out of their time here at VIU and will then be able to carry those skills and that education with them throughout the rest of their life.
The most important thing for students in the classroom is to be attentive and willing to learn. By showing up and being open to new ideas they can get so much out of their time in the classroom. It also helps when students take the ideas from one class and apply them across to other classes, this way they are able to see how all of their learning is interconnected.
I think one of the biggest challenges that international students face in US classrooms is cultural. Many of the approaches to teaching in the US are more informal and inclusive than what they have seen in the past; and that can take some getting used to.
Jason C. Cherubini, MBA, CPA:
School of Business