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UT, Kyung Hee University Host Two-Week Virtual Study Abroad Program

Joe Stabb (pictured top left) instructs 12 Kyung Hee University students in the course titled “Sustainable Communication: Best Practices and Corporate Perspectives”

by Mary Dolan

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, hosted 12 students from Kyung Hee University in Seoul, South Korea for a two-week virtual study abroad program in July 2022. The students enrolled in and completed a course titled, “Sustainable Communication: Best Practices and Corporate Perspectives,” taught by Joe Stabb, Ph.D., APR, assistant professor of practice at the Tombras School of Advertising and Public Relations.

The course featured case-studies that allowed students to examine how organizations use public relations and their corporate influence to develop relationships with stakeholders and align management practices with the 17 Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations.

During the course students heard from experts of sustainable communication from across the globe. The guest speakers represented an array of organizations, including the UN, IBM, Ketchum and Boeing.

The students were introduced to flavors of Tennessee including a virtual cooking class and a lesson on the American country music genre. Ingredients for the southern dish, shrimp and grits, were sent to the students in advance of a virtual cooking class. Mark Neisler, compliance coordinator with the Online Learning and Academic Programs and former professional chef, led the live, virtual cooking class on the art of making shrimp and grits. Cade Botts, doctoral candidate at the School of Music, spoke with the class about the history and variations of country music.

For the parties involved, the virtual study-abroad was the first of its kind and the first partnership between UT and Kyung Hee University. Joe Stabb believes this kind of experience can contribute to UT’s international presence and enrich the lives of people in Knoxville and abroad.

“Any connections we can make globally and partner with other universities is going to make our institution stronger. It’s not all about ‘can we get students from there’, but there are collaborations that develop, there are research collaborations, there are other areas administratively that we can all work together on,” said Dr. Stabb.

The two-week virtual study abroad partnership with Kyung Hee University was a collaboration between UT’s Office of Asia Engagement and the Tombras School of Advertising and Public Relations.


Jason Moody (865-974-5752,