Mississippi College

Mei-Chi Piletz Leads Mississippi College Office of Global Education

October 15, 2012

Stepping up recruitment of Mississippi College’s international students and increasing ties with universities abroad, Mei-Chi Piletz wants to achieve big goals as the new executive director of MC’s Office of Global Education.

Bringing a track record of success during 19 years in higher education, the native of Taiwan hit the ground running and is winning over colleagues after going to work on the Clinton campus October 1.

“A lady of immense charm, energy and intellect, Mrs. Piletz has an impressive record teaching and working with international students,” says Ron Howard, vice president for academic affairs. “She has a great heart for all students, American and international.”

Hired in 1995 to teach German at Jackson State University, Piletz later created the first course in Mandarin Chinese at JSU. By 2006, she was named by then-President Ronald Mason to develop the Office of Chinese Initiatives to strengthen JSU ties to sister universities in China.

Mei-Chi has volunteered to teach English as a Second Language at Broodmoor Baptist Church and served as principal of the Mississippi Chinese School. She also expanded the school’s courses to Jackson area adults seeking to learn Chinese. The state College Board honored her during Black History Month in 2010 for serving as a role model and promoting diversity at Jackson State and throughout Mississippi.

Mei-Chi says she looks forward to leading an MC office that “supports the needs and promotes the retention of our international students on top of increasing their enrollment.”

In addition, she seeks to upgrade student and faculty international exchange programs, and maintain close ties with the entire Mississippi College family so they become “champions of our global community.”

Piletz received her bachelor’s degree in German at Fu-Jen Catholic University in Taiwan, where she was born and raised, and a master’s in Germanic languages and literature from the University of Cincinnati.

She and her husband, John Piletz, a businessman and adjunct professor of biochemistry at Jackson State, attend First Baptist Church Madison. They’re the parents of two grown children, Aaron, an account manager at Expeditor International, and Andrew, a brand manager at Abbott Nutrition. Both sons are University of Mississippi graduates living in Ohio.

Being part of a Christian university is a blessing and helping her achieve her dreams to build the international student family stretching from Mississippi to many parts of the globe, Piletz says.

Staff members at the Office of Global Education say they appreciate her open-door policy, ability to instantly build friendships, her zest and strong work ethic. Many international students she helped years ago stay in touch with her by phone or email.

This fall, Mississippi College is home to 239 international students from 26 nations. About 180 MC students come from China. Others come from Saudi Arabia, India, Nepal, Germany and England, to name a few.

Mei-Chi’s “personal odyssey from international student to American citizen” plus her vast higher education experience makes her superbly qualified “to advance every aspect of international student life at Mississippi College,” Howard said.

For more information on the Office of Global Education, contact Mei-Chi Piletz at mcpiletz@mc.edu.

Photo: Mei-Chi Piletz

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