UNC World View Partner Spotlight: Susanne Long
UNC World View
Susanne Long, Onslow County Schools.
The Onslow County School System, headquartered in Jacksonville, NC, is home to the largest Marine Corps base on the East Coast, serving students and parents who have a variety of international experiences. Global awareness in the county, however, is not limited to military families.
“We host 50 plus international teachers on a J-1 visa and have seven schools, elementary and middle, that offer dual–language immersion,” said Susanne Long, director of continuous improvement and interim executive director of exceptional children in Onslow County Schools. Additionally, Onslow County Schools is recognized by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) as a Model Global-Ready District and sustains two NCDPI Global-Ready Schools: Carolina Forest International Elementary and Dixon Elementary.
Long has been able to expand upon the school system’s programming through resources offered by UNC World View. This Carolina initiative equips K-12 and community college educators with global knowledge, best practices and resources to prepare students to engage in our interconnected and diverse world.
In 2017, Onslow County Schools hosted UNC World View’s K-12 Global Education Summit. Over 600 educators gathered for this one-day, professional development event offered to partner institutions.
Long has also attended the Global Education Leaders Program at UNC-Chapel Hill; she has taken global study visits to South Africa, Germany and Ireland; and she has completed UNC World View’s online technology integration course.
“The professional development offerings, resources and collaborative connections have provided a lift to the ongoing work we do, preparing students for careers and college,” said Long. She also expanded upon the collaborative nature of seminars and symposia, noting that sharing at UNC World View has given Onslow County teachers an important platform for their personal professional development.
“More importantly, this work has enhanced student voice. Onslow has had students as young as first grade share at state conferences. That is impact, hearing a seven-year-old share her compelling ‘why’ of global learning and language instruction.”
During the inaugural Global Education Leaders Program Abroad in early 2020, Long noticed the value in collaboration across the state and throughout grade levels, kindergarten through community college. “It is so important to share tools, strategies, and resources that can provide students with career-ready skills which ultimately impact future economics of North Carolina and beyond,” she emphasized.
While Onslow County already has an impressive capacity for global education, the county continues to strengthen and expand in this area. Using NCDPI’s Global-Ready Rubric, the Onslow County school system is bolstering standards-based instruction, increasing STEM opportunities, opening career pathways and providing leading-edge language opportunities to its students. The district extends their reach beyond the walls of the classroom into community and business partnerships.
Despite the changes catalyzed by COVID-19, Long remains optimistic. She believes that the universal challenges of providing quality education, technology access, health care and food security ultimately unite educators.
“Our students have wonderful opportunities ahead as they connect, learn and share with students from around the world to discuss and potentially solve global concerns,” expressed Long.
With her sights set on preparing the next generation of global leaders, UNC World View is excited to see how Susanne Long and Onslow County continue to advance global education in the future.