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University of Iowa News Release


July 11, 2007

Korean Educators Visit UI, Sign Linkage Agreement With Belin-Blank Center

A group of 23 educators from Daejeon, South Korea, is coming to the University of Iowa College of Education's Connie Belin and Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development July 16 through 27 for a two-week course on gifted education.

Daejeon Education Governor Shin-Ho Kim, a UI alumnus who graduated with his doctorate in educational psychology/measurement and statistics from the UI College of Education in 1992, will accompany the educators, who are elementary and secondary school teachers from the Daejeon Metropolitan School District.

During his visit, Kim will participate in a memorandum of understanding signing ceremony between Daejeon Metropolitan School District and the Belin-Blank Center. The signing ceremony will be at 10 a.m. Monday, July 16, in the sixth floor conference room of the Blank Honors Center.

The memorandum of understanding will create opportunities to exchange visiting scholars, share in research studies, form student-exchange programs, and provide professional development seminars in gifted education.

Laurie Croft, Belin-Blank Center administrator for professional development, is overseeing the visit by the Korean educators.

"The Korean government has made gifted education a priority. In the last five years or so, their focus on gifted education has really grown," Croft said. "Their commitment to work with centers such as ours is a real testament that they want to advance the talents that exist in their country. I hope that we can learn from them as well as provide them with ideas for effectively educating gifted students."

Daejeon is a metropolitan city in the center of South Korea. With a population of almost 1.5 million people, it is the fifth largest city in South Korea. In fall 2006, 287 UI students attended the UI from South Korea, making it the country with the third largest student representation on campus.

Nicholas Colangelo, director of the Belin-Blank Center, said that the center has made a major commitment to its international emphasis, making it one of their new strategic goals.

The UI College of Education's Connie Belin and Jacqueline N. Blank International Center for Gifted Education and Talent Development is part of the UI College of Education. For more information on the Belin-Blank Center, visit

For more information on the visit or the memorandum of understanding, contact Croft at or at 319-335-6148.

STORY SOURCE: University of Iowa News Services, 300 Plaza Centre One, Suite 371, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-2500.

PROGRAM CONTACT: Laurie Croft, 319-335-6148,

MEDIA CONTACT: Lois J. Gray, 319-384-0077,