MLW welcomes students from China thanks to new partnership with Hamden Edux.

Many young people around the world dream about having the opportunity to study in the United States. This summer, a group of students from China took the first steps towards making this dream a reality thanks to a new partnership between Maryland Leadership Workshops (MLW) and Hamden Edux.

Based in Columbia, Maryland, Hamden Edux is an international education agency that facilitates the process of bringing students from abroad to study in American private schools. The organization gives students the opportunity to experience education differently than they would in their home countries.

“Here in the states, our school system focuses a lot more on developing students’ passions and letting them explore different opportunities,” said Lia Kauffman, program director for Hamden Edux’s Private School Program. “In countries like China, most of the curriculum is based on memorization, tutoring, and lecturing. For students who want the American school experience, our program helps them select, apply to, and prepare for an education at a private school.”

Preparing students for an education—and a life—in another country requires offering many evaluations, screenings, and one-on-one tutoring sessions to improve their English-speaking skills. Hamden Edux developed its Global Experiential Learning (GEL) program to help students with the transition into American culture.

“Through our GEL program, we partner with summer camps and programs in different areas of the country,” said Lia. “This is a good way for younger students, as early as fifth grade, who have an interest in studying in the United States one day to get a first-hand feel of the culture and people, while improving their English skills in an authentic context.”

This past year, Lia and her Hamden Edux team found MLW and saw a connection between the two organizations.

“Our interest in MLW was immediate,” said Lia. “They’ve designed their programs to be fun and activity-based, but with a focus on academics and lessons in leadership, communication and teamwork. We knew this was a great opportunity for our students to interact with American students and gain the necessary tools to thrive and develop when they begin their education here.”

The prospect of a partnership was also appealing to MLW, as it would mark the first time the organization welcomed a group of delegates from outside the country.

“MLW is already a diverse program, as we attract delegates from many different backgrounds across Maryland and throughout the U.S.,” said executive director Anita Anderson. “As our programs grow, so too should our reach, so this opportunity to expand in diversity from a global perspective seemed to be a natural next step.”

Hamden Edux arranged for 30 students to travel from China to attend a week-long MLW program. They held an orientation to prepare the students for the cross-cultural differences, and even had chaperones on site at the camp to monitor the students’ performance and report back to their parents.

“This partnership with MLW is a great opportunity to increase our students’ interest in studying in the U.S.,” said Lia. “Not only do they see the value of learning English and the possibilities it can open for them, but the leadership focus of MLW’s programming helps increase their confidence as they move forward with their education and build cross-cultural competency.”

Ecstatic with the response from the students who attended during the summer of 2018, Lia and her team have already begun the recruitment process to find the next group of attendees for 2019. And MLW is excited to receive them.

“International students are a wonderful addition to our programs,” says Anita. “Our staff and delegates were pleased to welcome the students from China and had fun getting to know them. We thank Lia and Hamden Edux for allowing MLW to be a part of the GEL program, and we look forward to a long partnership.”

If your organization is interested in partnering with MLW please contact Anita Anderson at