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BSC 2013 Graduate Kevin Neese Prepares for Teaching Assignment in Japan

  • Created
    Wednesday, May 22 2013
  • Created by
    Jim Nelson/Media Relations - (304) 327-4103

kevin neese(Bluefield)—When Kevin Neese walked across the stage to receive his diploma at Bluefield State College’s 2013 commencement exercises, the Bluefield resident was positioned for what truly is the “next adventure” in his life.  This July, he will take his first air flight and first trip abroad to begin teaching “English as a Second Language” (ESL) in Japan.

An English/Humanities major at BSC, Neese is participating in the Japanese Exchange & Teaching Program (JET) a competitive program to promote Japan’s openness to cultural exchange with other nations.  “I’m honored to have been selected,” Neese noted, just a few days before graduating from BSC.  “JET is a very competitive program with more than 10,000 applicants each year, from which around 1500 are accepted.” 

A 2005 graduate of Bluefield High School, Neese will be fulfilling a lifelong a dream when he travels to the Orient.  “I have always been interested in the international experience, and I really enjoy Japanese literature and art,” he explained.  While serving as an assistant language teacher in the ESL program, Neese will also receive free Japanese language training while there.

“JET participants are cultural ambassadors for America who, upon their return, tell other Americans about Japanese culture and language,” he added.  Neese, the son of Bluefield residents Pam and John Neese, expressed special appreciation to Dr. Luciano Picanco, Director of the International Studies Program at Bluefield State College, and to BSC faculty members Dr. Aleta Crockett, Dr. Sean Connolly, and Dr. Sudhakar Jamkhandi.

“I am very proud of Kevin,” Dr. Picanco said.  “He put a lot of effort into getting this opportunity.  This will be very important at three levels; it will change him—the world will get smaller and people more alike; it will change his students in Japan because they will know more about us and about the United States, and; it will eventually change our region—when Kevin returns with new ideas and experiences to share.”

Kevin will depart from the United States to Japan on July 27.