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    • Carolyn Becker, Director, Programs Abroad Office
    • Em Chitty, Interim Director, English Language Institute
    • Jamie McGowan, Director, Global Research Office
    • Rachel Rui, Director, Office of Communications and Office of Asia Engagement
    • Erik Simons, Interim Director, Office of International Student and Scholar Services
    • Lauren Wood, Director, Office of International House

Carolyn Becker

Carolyn Becker, Director

Programs Abroad Office

Carolyn Becker is the Director of Programs Abroad at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. In this role, she works directly with a unique and diverse student population to provide support related to global learning opportunities. Becker is the recipient of the 2018 NAFSA Rising Star Young Leader national award and has completed Professional Certification in Education Abroad (The Forum on Education Abroad). She has served as a reviewer for multiple national scholarships and has served on external education abroad task forces and committees. Her educational background includes a Bachelor of Arts in History from Winona State University and a Master of Science in Education in College Development and Administration from the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse.

Em Chitty

Em Chitty, Interim Director

English Language Institute

The author of “How We Really Talk: Using Phrasal Verbs in English and Spelling and Sound: Spelling Common Words in English”, Em Chitty has taught English as a Second Language for nearly 35 years, 13 of them at the English Language Institute. She looks forward to building on and expanding the English Language Institute’s mission and connection to both the local and international communities. She has served as a Fulbright scholarship application judge and coordinated a US State Department Humphrey Fellow workshop on global challenges for women entrepreneurs. At UTK, she piloted and taught an introduction to teach for international graduate teaching assistants and has presented at a number of professional conferences. Her off-campus interests include singing jazz standards and gardening.

Jamie McGowan

Jamie McGowan

Jamie McGowan, Director

Global Research Office

Jamie McGowan joined CGE as the Director of the Global Research Office in August 2019. She obtained her PhD and M.A. degrees in Geography from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a B.A. in Geography from Macalester College.

As the director of the Global Research Office, McGowan’s responsibilities include administering Global Catalyst research grants, overseeing global partnership development, strategizing with faculty and helping assess readiness for global research engagements, and providing proposal development support.

Rachel Rui

Rachel Rui, Director

Office of Asia Engagement
Office of Communications

Rachel Rui joined CGE in September 2019. As the communications director, her responsibilities include strategic planning and execution of communication strategies to build a global brand for UT and providing services to CGE units for their communication needs. Her work at OAE focuses on building and maintaining partnerships in Asia, promoting cultural diversity, increasing students and faculty’s mobility, and improving community outreach. Rui obtained both her Master’s and PhD degrees in Communication and Information from UT.

Erik Simons

Erik Simons, Interim Director

Office of International Student and Scholar Services

Erik currently leads a team that supports the recruitment and retention of outstanding faculty, staff, and researchers by providing assistance in obtaining appropriate immigration status and assistance in adjusting to the US. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from DePauw University and a master’s degree in higher education and student affairs from Indiana University. Erik has lived and worked in Spain and traveled extensively in Europe and South America. He enjoys serving as a resource for international students and believes international education can be a powerful tool for teaching people about themselves and others.

Lauren Wood

Lauren Wood, Director

International House