Program Director: Professor Helen H. Shen
Helen currently serves as Chair for the Department of Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures at UI. She has more than 20 years of Chinese L2 teaching and research experience, and has successfully directed three STARTALK programs for Iowa junior and senior high school students.
Instructional Lead: Ms. Xi Ma
Xi holds a K-12 licensure for teaching Chinese in Iowa and is a PhD Candidate in Second Language Acquisition specializing in Chinese at UI. She regularly coordinates and offers beginning-level Chinese courses for Iowa high school students. She served as a curriculum consultant for the previous UI STARTALK programs.
Co-Director and Primary Instructor: Dr. Yuan Lu
Yuan is Academic Coordinator of the Chinese Program, Department of Asian and Slavic Languages and Literatures at UI. He holds a PhD in Second Language Acquisition specializing in Chinese language teaching and learning. He has more than ten years of Chinese teaching experience. Prior to joining the UI faculty, he also taught Chinese for high school students at the University of Kansas.
Co- Instructor: Ms. Dexin Dai
Dexin holds a master’s degree in teaching Chinese as a second language and is a PhD candidate in Second language acquisition specializing in Chinese at UI. She has taught Chinese classes at UI for three years.
Co-Instructor: Ms. Na Li
Na holds a master’s degree in teaching Chinese as a second language and taught Chinese at UI for more than three years. Before her master’s studies, she was a Chinese instructor at Lakes International Language Academy.