My first blog

So far blogging does not seem that hard.  It is almost like a journal or a diary where I get to share my thoughts with countless unknown people.  Why am I blogging?  Well, I have been give the opportunity to study higher education and research in Chile for a week in January 2012.  It is very exciting.  As I prepare for this adventure, I have been asked to blog.

My goal for this week was to search for faculty that are doing research similar to me.  We are going to spend a majority of time at Austral University.  Unfortunately, their website does not list the faculty and their research interests.  I have had to be creative in finding possible contacts.  I tried Endnote, narrowing my search with Chilean published journals.  I found some potentials for the University of Chile and the Catholic University, but I struck out on Austral.  I then tried google scholar and found an article co-authored by a VT graduate student.  I am going to contact her next to see if she can give me some good ideas.

I guess what I hope to gain from these faculty meetings is an opportunity to see how research is conducted in Chile and how it is similar and different to how we conduct research here.  I would also like to understand what topics are most relevant in research compared to the US.  For instance, obesity is a huge focus in the United States.  Would it be the same for Chile?  Lastly, I would like to learn more about their teaching load, funding requirements and service to the University.  How does it compare to the US?

My outcomes for the trip are to broaden my horizons and how I view higher education.  I want to experience a new culture and become a more global citizen in my professional and personal life.  –Angela