Myanmar: a new frontier for international student recruitment

“Since political and economic liberalization, the advent of a multiparty democratic system, and the lifting of economic sanctions, the country has been opening up to the world in grand fashion”

The number of Myanmarese students heading overseas for study may be low at the moment, but political shifts and a growing economy mean it is a rapidly growing student market. The time for education institutions in the US and beyond to begin recruiting is now, say Mark Ashwill, managing director of Capstone Vietnam, and Deepak Neopane, founder of City College Yangon and managing director of Academics International.

Situated between two of the largest countries in the world, India and China, Myanmar has significant geopolitical importance in Southeast Asia. Until the early 1960s, Burma, as it was then known, was the region’s most developed, most well-educated, and richest nation. Yangon University was a prestigious institution in the region and Yangon Airport was a major regional hub.
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Creative thinking in the UK boarding schools market: the key to survival

“Schools that stick rigidly to their systems suffer untold reputational damage, which could take a generation to dilute”

Pat Moores, director of UK Education Guide, looks at some of the challenges facing the boarding schools sector in the UK, and how schools are adapting by opening up new markets.

Under increasing international competition, many schools are looking at new, emerging markets to benefit all pupils and school finances.

“Smart schools celebrate high levels of diversity in their international population and know their British students have much to gain from living and learning side by side with a broad range of nationalities,” says Maura Power, international student recruitment manager at Culford School.
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Choose your words wisely: why study abroad needs to speak the language of employment

“Without this type of research as a foundation to measure the value of study abroad on careers, there is no basis to argue its place”

By Carrie Rackers Cunningham, director of institutional research at IES Abroad, makes the case for collecting more hard data on the link between study abroad and employability, to help practitioners speak the language of employment.

What do employers look for? We know the list: interpersonal communication, ability to work in a team, make decisions, solve problems, etc.
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How can universities protect themselves from cyber attacks?

“One of the reasons why HE could be targeted by cyber criminals is that it holds lots of personal data and intellectual property that can be sold to information brokers”

As details of a recent ransomware attack on a top UK university unfold this week, Andrew Blyth, director of the Cyber Defence Centre at the University of South Wales, reflects on the lessons learned from the Wannacry cyber attack on the NUS and how the higher education sector can arm itself against cybercrime.

How did the NHS Wannacry attack happen and why?

There are two major lessons that we can learn from the Wannacry ransomware outbreak of May 2017. The first is the need to practice basic cyber security hygiene in terms of patch management, antivirus and firewall management. The reason for this is that the Wannacry ransomware used the MS17-010 vulnerability to attack unprotected computer systems. Microsoft had, in the weeks before the Wannacry outbreak, published a patch which was developed in response to the MS17-010 vulnerability. You may say that if all systems had been patched then the outbreak on the NHS systems would not have happened.

However, such a simple assertion ignores the second lesson.
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No one saw the UK’s election upset coming. What now for higher education?

“Our European colleagues have told me they see this as a very good result. It will make it impossible for the government to force through a hard Brexit”

Following the UK’s shock election result, which saw the Conservatives fall short of a majority, Aldwyn Cooper, vice chancellor and chief executive of Regent’s University London, considers what the upset and a resulting alliance with Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party could mean for the higher education sector.

No one in government saw this result coming. Only yesterday, one senior Conservative suggested that they were expecting to achieve a majority over Labour of over 100.
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Outreach work could increase the ‘1% of refugees who reach higher education’

“This kind of work is about identifying the needs of the individual and providing effective signposting”

A new report claims just 1% of refugees reach higher education, but there is an argument that this figure could be improved with outreach work by universities. Lucy Judd, outreach coordinator at Nottingham Trent University, explains.

Imagine having aspirations of staying in education to become a doctor, lawyer or architect, but then being unexpectedly forced to abandon your studies and flee your country because it is unsafe, leaving you unsure of what your future holds.
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London-Paris: Building a post-Brexit future in higher education

“London and Paris, and other global cities, can deliver positive global impact at scale, if we work together to address shared challenges”

As Brexit draws closer, Nicola Brewer, UCL Vice-Provost International, and Tim Gore, CEO, University of London Institute in Paris, write about how universities in the UK can continue to engage with institutions in Paris and other global cities, even after the UK leaves the EU.

London and Paris are truly global cities. With their diverse populations of close to nine and 12 million respectively, world-leading culture, media, innovation and business quarters, they both play a big role in the world economy. Higher education is an integral part of driving economic prosperity.
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Is the Middle States Commission on Higher Education’s anti-agent stance a case of Americentrism?

“If US institutions hope to continue to attract international students in an increasingly competitive marketplace, then we had better sit at the table and find a way to make this work”

Jean-Marc Alberola, president of Bridge Education Group, reflects on a recent proposal to prohibit the use of compensated oversea student recruitment agencies in part of the US, and looks at the arguments for and against using agents.

After much study and debate on the topic of commissioned agents in international student recruitment, is it time for many in the US higher edu community to reflect upon the notion that it might be viewing the agent debate from an overly US focused perspective?

To many, the recent proposal by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education to extend the prohibition on incentive compensation to the recruitment of foreign students who are not eligible to receive federal student assistance is bewildering. That is, it is bewildering unless we consider that this might very well be a case of bias, or having a US centric perspective, with an implied belief, either consciously or subconsciously, that the context of domestic student recruitment somehow applies and is relevant outside the United States.
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Don’t overlook transnational alumni

 “Enter transnational alumni: alumni that conduct their personal and professional lives within two or more countries”

Education institutions around the world are upping their efforts to engage with not only their domestic but also their international alumni – but many overlook a third category, writes Gretchen Dobson, EdD, Academic Assembly‘s Vice President International Alumni & Graduate Services, Managing Director, Australia.

Two years ago, while based in China, I had one of those ‘ah-ha’ moments: I realized that for the vast majority of institutions that define their alumni demographics as “domestic or international”, there is another category to define and engage. Enter transnational alumni: alumni that conduct their personal and professional lives within two or more countries. Today’s international education’s trends and future practices support the concept of this new definition that goes beyond the “either/or” and other limiting database management practices.
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How can universities protect their academic travellers?

“Many institutions may be leaving themselves exposed unnecessarily – particularly in a fast-changing and dynamic global environment with new risks and threats”

Randall Gordon-Duff, head of product, corporate travel for Collinson Group, which specialises in global travel assistance, shares some tips on what higher education institutions that send students and academic staff abroad should be looking at when reviewing their duty of care strategies.

The world is seemingly becoming a more dangerous place for many of us. As I write this piece, I recall a BBC article from earlier this year titled: Apocalypse is 30 Seconds Closer, say Doomsday Clock Scientists. The report states that this is the closest the clock has come to midnight since 1953, following hydrogen bomb tests by the US and Russia.
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