News - University Pathways Welcomes New Director of Student Services

University Pathways Welcomes New Director of Student Services

By Kaylee Summers '16

UP Group

This spring marks Dr. Kang Sun’s second semester at Greenville College as Director of University Pathways Student Services and he is dedicated to being there for students in the tricky moments of adapting to life as a student at Greenville College. Dr. Sun, who was also once an international student, leads with the experience and empathy needed to help students as they embark on their journeys at GC.

Originally from Xi’an China, Sun moved to the U.S. to further his education; he received an MBA in Scientific and Technical Communication and a Ph.D. in Communication and Media from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. After receiving his degrees, Dr. Sun moved to Singapore to work in health communication. He communicated with migrant workers from China working in Singapore publicizing their voices and their pains to the government. In this role, Sun loved working with the people, dealing with iniquity and finding a communication campaign to rectify the situation. Going to Singapore offered a chance to remember his childhood and consider his roots from a new angle. “I was able to rethink my past and figure out a way to redefine my past by going back to them and interviewing them,” he explains.

 KangHis current role, as the Director of the University Pathways Program at GC, welds his passion for higher education with his passion for helping others. Dr. Sun has great confidence in the University Pathways program at GC. “It is a must for one to gain some experience other than the experience learned from their home country,” he explains. Students who enroll In the University Pathways program will not only have the opportunity to understand their own culture, but also gain an understanding of their host culture. Dr. Sun says students who study abroad are able to discover an “inter-culture” allowing them to interact with both cultures. This gives international students the advantage of seeing the world from distinctly different lenses.

Not only does Dr. Sun believe in studying abroad, but he believes in Greenville College. Dr. Sun explains, “What is unique to GC are the close relationships between people; everyone is so sincere and welcoming and when you have difficulties you are not afraid because people are always willing to help.” This aspect of GC is helpful not only for him but also for international students, "At Greenville College, International students are really well taken care of.”

When students pass through the University Pathways Program they are congratulated with a signing ceremony, attended by leaders at GC, including the President of Greenville College, Dr. Ivan Filby and Sr. Advisor to President for Alumni Relations and Vice President for International Affairs, Dr. Norm Hall. During this ceremony, the students sign their names in a designated book to commemorate their experience with the University Pathway program for the years to come. According to Dr. Sun, for many international students signing your name is not a common practice. Instead, culturally, “ a signing ceremony is to congratulate the previous achievements and to call for a more mature identity.” This signing ceremony offers the opportunity for each graduating student to enter into a new Greenville College identity and help pave the way for more international students to follow.

Dr. Sun is already doing great things as the new Director of Student Pathways Student Services and will continue to guide the path for many more international students who will walk onto GC’s campus. GC is a place that invites every student to join in its culture and heritage of leading lives of character and service – in all parts of the world. As new University Pathways students arrive on campus, the College waits expectantly for countless unique signatures to fill its signing ceremony book to commemorate the students' identities as members of the Greenville College community.

This story was published on April 18, 2016

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