Peter Hsu

Peter’s Story

Tell us more about your (current or previous) position. Describe your role.

Dean of a “corporate university” in Southwest China. The school is mainly involved in employee, management, and executive development. Also a curriculum development consultant for other universities and colleges in the US, Canada, and China.

How does a day at work look like?

In the last two years, I mostly work online writing or reviewing program plans, curricula, meeting with other educators online. I teach a few courses personally, usually in Business Ethics and Business Planning.

What gives you meaning and fulfillment in your work?

I live out my Christian faith through my calling as an educator. I can look at every student and teacher as “God-sent” and interact with them as Christ would have. In this, I find great joy and fulfillment. I also have access to prayer to petition for the difficult situations.

What are some of the challenges you have faced?

Covid-19 and the immediate transition to online learning is the greatest challenge. Working in China, there is the constant tendency for any educational system to overly rely on behavioristic instructional strategies. I am mostly a constructivist and always trying to change things.

What are some accomplishments or highlights that you are most proud of?

Starting the Sichuan Proverbs School of Management for the Blue Sword Group (3000+ employees) and served as its Dean for the past 9 years. Planted the Chengdu Thanksgiving (Protestant)Church and served as it Elder-Teacher since 2008. Also initiated a solid Christian Education program in this church.

Tell us a bit about your path leading to your graduate degree. Why did you decide to pursue graduate studies?

I worked in the IT industry for 15 years (including 5 years as an IT educator). I earned a MA in Educational Technology Leadership from the George Washington University and was interested in broadening into the whole area of adult and professional education. The EdD program at UBC helped me pivot out of just IT education.

How has what you learned in your graduate program informed your work

It gave me a number of years to reflect on 40 prior years of learning experience. The teachers in the EdD program are great models of the manner of a teacher. I really appreciate the interactions with them.

How does your area of work relate to your dissertation?

In my thesis, I developed a set of principles to guide constructive professional and vocational education. I have been using these principles to guide my own practice ever since. I also train others teachers to use these principles in their field.

What is your most memorable experience from your time in EDST?

The Summer residencies were always the highlight of the year. I enjoyed the comradery of the cohort format, the great Vancouver Summers, the food, the campus, Green College, etc.

What is something that you needed to learn (beyond your degree) or unlearn to be able to work in your sector?

Because I work mostly in a China context, learning the cultural context for adult education there is essential. I am still learning about the work culture, school culture, family culture, and so on.