Sabbaticals in China – Introduction

As we reported in the Winter 2007 Integram, Owen Byer and Deirdre Smeltzer each spent a sabbatical semester in China during the 2005-06 academic year. Owen and his family lived in Nanchong, Sichuan province, from August through December of 2005; Deirdre and her family took their place for February through July of 2006.

The purpose of these sabbaticals was three-fold:

  1. to experience the Chinese culture;
  2. to gain new perspective by teaching English to Chinese college students under the China Educational Exchange program;
  3. to make progress on a geometry textbook currently being written by Owen, Deirdre, and a colleague at the University of Delaware, Dr. Felix Lazebnik.

The geometry book, while not quite complete, was used last semester as the text for Deirdre’s geometry course, so goal number three was achieved.

For the other goals, judge for yourself based on these stories and photos.

If you have questions or comments, e-mail them to Owen or Deirdre.