Pictured here are Jean-Bruner Clotaire (left) and Claude Elisma (right).

Pictured here are Jean-Bruner Clotaire (left) and Claude Elisma (right).

Patricia Robinson

Seven students from Universite Quisqueya in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, will be attending Missouri Southern in January 2009.

Earlier this week, Jean-Bruner Clotaire, professor of business at Universite Quisqueya, and Claude Elisma, dean of the school of business at Universite Quisqueya, toured MSSU, met faculty, and ate lunch in the cafeteria.

“We want to see the environment at MSSU,” Clotaire said. “We even ate the food.”

Faculty and staff have given Clotaire and Elisma advice to return home with.

“We share, and they share experiences with us to correct some points at our university,” Clotaire said.

Both men have traveled to the United States before, but never to the four-state area.

“It’s a quiet town. It’s good for students and studies,” Clotaire said.

Elisma said small towns are not usually diverse, but Joplin and the University have a variety of cultures.

Clotaire expects the students will be involved in athletics and campus activities.

“We encourage them to integrate with the host school,” Clotaire said. “And they are ready for that.”

The University received a grant, which will allow the Haitian students to continue their education at MSSU.

“Missouri Southern received a grant from the United States Aid For International Development, and the purpose of this grant is to work with the University of Quisqueya in Port-au-Prince, Haiti,” said Chris Moos, assistant professor of international business.

Moos said the grant functions to provide degree completion for seven Haitian students. It’s also supposed to provide faculty development and improve the curriculum in Haiti.

“It’s also supposed to work on some workforce development for the Haitian economy,” Moos said.