UNC Global Partnership and Programs’ Katie Bowler Young Nominated for Governor’s Award for Excellence
UNC Global Affairs
Katie Bowler Young, interim senior director for Global Partnership and Programs in the Office of the Vice Provost for Global Affairs, has been nominated for a Governor’s Award for Excellence, the highest honor a state employee can receive. The award recognizes contributions that make a positive difference in the lives of North Carolinians. Employees from across the state, serving numerous governmental departments as well as the UNC system, are eligible to receive the award, which is presented in seven categories.
Young was nominated in the Efficiency and Innovation category for her work to develop Carolina’s first Collaborative Online International Learning (COIL) program. Young’s work helped further global education during the pandemic when many global learning opportunities were restricted.
“I am so honored to be among UNC’s nominees for this award,” said Young. “This is truly a reflection of my entire team’s work and the commitment of our faculty to offer our students a global education.”
Beginning in May 2020, facing months of continued uncertainty about global travel and study abroad, Young worked with Heather Ward, then associate dean for study abroad and now associate provost for global affairs, to design and launch a COIL pilot program. Young and her team recruited 38 Carolina faculty members to became part of the pilot and redesign their courses using the COIL method. During the 2020-21 academic year, more than 420 Carolina students benefitted from this initiative. Over the coming year or two, OVPGA will enhance support to faculty teaching COIL courses while seeking to grow the program, which is integral to delivering on Carolina’s Global Guarantee, to 40 or 50 COIL courses each academic year, serving 1,000 to 1,500 students annually.
As part of the Connecting Carolina Classrooms with the World initiative, COIL courses create opportunities for shared learning between students in a course at UNC-Chapel Hill and peer students at a global partner university. The new program supports faculty members with Curriculum Development Awards and provides an opportunity to fund a graduate student to support the course. Funding for this initiative was provided by the Chancellor’s Global Education Fund, the Class of 1938, the American Council on Education, and the Grassy Creek Foundation.
“The inspired and tireless work undertaken by Katie Bowler Young and her team allowed Carolina in a single year to catapult into the top ranks of U.S. universities using COIL to expand inclusive and barrier-free access to a transformative global education,” said Barbara Stephenson, vice provost for global affairs. “That Katie did this in the midst of a pandemic and with no existing infrastructure in place speaks not only to her efficiency and innovation, but also to her absolute commitment to deliver on Carolina’s Global Guarantee—now and well into the future.”
While the challenges of the global pandemic have disrupted UNC-Chapel Hill students’ experiences in many ways, Young opened a new avenue for Carolina students to attain a global education and stay connected with the world. Young is one of four Carolina employees nominated this year. UNC-Chapel Hill nominees, listed by the Office of Human Resources, also include Steven King, associate professor at the Hussman School of Journalism and Media; Melissa Miller, professor of pathology and laboratory medicine in the School of Medicine and director of the Clinical Microbiology and Molecular Microbiology Laboratories at the UNC Medical Center; and Laura Respess, program assistant at Friday Center for Continuing Education.
Learn more about the four nominees and the Governor’s Awards for Excellence.