Tag: Study abroad

How Singapore became an English-speaking country

“Few international students who come to Singapore to study fully understand the intricacies of its complex language history”

Singapore was under British colonial rule for most of the 19th and 20th centuries, but few people outside an educated elite spoke English. It was also a diverse country with three major ethnic groups – Chinese, Indians, and Malays. How did a country consisting of non-native English speakers become a major study abroad destination for students from around the world, many of whom come to Singapore to study English or to study in English?

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International Education in New Zealand: New Applications for “№8 Wire”

“Policymakers are positioning international education within a fragile eco-system where sectors of the economy could collapse without the contributions of international students”

 

In 19th century New Zealand, №8 wire was the preferred wire gauge for sheep fencing, so farms often had plentiful supplies. It was said that one could just about fix anything with a handy piece of №8.

Over time, the idea of №8 wire came to represent the ingenuity, resilience and resourcefulness of New Zealanders and became a symbol of the nation’s ability to improvise and adapt. Today, New Zealand faces an array of more complex challenges.

As if with a piece of №8 wire in hand, Anthony Ogden, executive director of education abroad and exchanges at Michigan State University writes, the nation’s leaders have begun to reimagine international education as a viable strategy that can be repurposed to solve some of the country’s pressing challenges.

Although international education is generally discussed in relation to international student and scholar mobility, it is being framed in New Zealand as a dynamic industry in terms of export value, immigration, and as “supply chain management” to bolster the domestic workforce.

The nation’s policymakers are positioning international education within a fragile eco-system wherein certain sectors of the economy would potentially collapse without the economic and workforce contributions of international students.

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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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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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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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Jean-Marc is President of Bridge Education Group, a comprehensive provider of language and education services including corporate language training, teacher training, university pathway programs and international student recruitment. Jean-Marc started his language industry career with Telelangue Systems in Washington, D.C., before venturing on to Brazil, Chile and Argentina to launch Linguatec Language Centers. After 12 years in South America Jean-Marc returned to the U.S. to head up Bridge Education Group.

Jean-Marc has over 25 years’ experience in language and education abroad and is a regular presenter at AIEA, NAFSA, AIRC, IALC, and ICEF events. Jean-Marc holds a BA in Economics from the University of Vermont.

Corporations need to become part of the study abroad ecosystem

“The link between studying abroad and getting a job is not as strong as it might have been in the past. One reason is that study abroad is not as exclusive as in the past”

Students are growing ever more conscious of the investments they make when it comes to study abroad, and they want to know that the time and money they spend will translate to job opportunities post-graduation. Getting companies on board could help to ensure that’s the case, writes Richie Santosdiaz, study abroad advocate and economic development expert for PA Consulting.

What inspired me to write this was a recent conversation with a friend from the USA whose younger sister was interested in pursuing a master’s degree overseas. The friend gave advice that the younger sister should only study abroad in the UK or on certain programs in Western Europe, Canada, and Australia, because it will be difficult to get a job in the USA afterwards – and that the countries mentioned are home to some of the most recognised universities globally. Naturally, at first I disagreed, but later recanted because in many ways that actually is a true statement.
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If we want more underrepresented students to study abroad, we can’t treat them all the same

“When I studied abroad in Argentina and France, I was one of few that one would classify as a visible minority. In both programs, almost everyone who participated came from middle- and upper-middle-class families”

When discussing how to increase participation in study abroad, we often talk about ‘underrepresented students’ as if they’re all the same – we need to take a different approach, argues Richie Santosdiaz, an economic development expert for PA Consulting and passionate advocate for international education.

When we talk about increasing participation in study abroad among underrepresented student groups, we must first understand what an underrepresented group is.
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Richie Santosdiaz (@santosdiazr2) is mainly a London-based economic development expert for PA Consulting. In his free time he is an undergraduate-level adjunct lecturer mainly in the fields of international business & trade, where he teaches courses and guest lectures for institutions like the Council for International Educational Exchange (CIEE) in London. He is also an advocate of international education, specifically encouraging more young Americans to gain international education and work experience. One way he does that, as a hobby, is through his website www.youngamericanexpat.com.

Social media in a crisis

“Contacting people via social media in a crisis situation is the quickest way to determine safety and whereabouts, especially when there are thousands of miles between you”

If crisis strikes when students are overseas, how can institutions check they’re ok? Email is just too slow, writes Mandy Reinig, director of study away at Virginia Wesleyan College and founder of the social media consultancy Mandy’s Mashups. She explains how social media can help to reach students who might otherwise fall off the radar.

Most people in the field of international education now understand the importance of social media in communicating with students. However, many have yet to harness its power in crisis situations. The world today has become an increasingly volatile place where the unexpected can occur at any moment. As such it is important to be able to have a means of contacting your students to determine their whereabouts and their safety status. Unfortunately, email, and even phone calls, cannot be relied on as the sole or even a reliable means of communication due to the fact that students often do not check their email regularly and in major events phone lines can be down for hours.
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Helping your students communicate the value of their international experience

 “Despite all the ways an international experience may have influenced their character, many college-aged students struggle to take that last step of weaving their abroad story into their professional narrative”

Studying, working or undertaking an internship abroad can help to equip students with skills and experiences they might not otherwise have had – but the challenge for many students is communicating this to employers. Katie Arango, managing director of Connect-123, considers how institutions can enable their students to get the most out of their international experiences.

International education professionals, students who’ve studied abroad, and at this point, a large portion of the general population are well aware of the many benefits of study, volunteer, teaching and internships abroad. Getting pushed outside one’s comfort zone and being immersed in a different culture presents a multitude of growth opportunities that enrich students personally and eventually, professionally. And in this highly competitive work environment, time spent abroad can certainly be a point of differentiation from other candidates.
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Katie Arango helps create customized international internships and meaningful volunteer programs with Connect-123 in Buenos Aires.

Study abroad: the best decision I almost didn’t make

“I remember my professor’s wife telling me that this was only the beginning for me, and she was right”

Sabrina Prioleau refutes the idea that short-term study abroad doesn’t have an impact on students, describing how her own experience has inspired her to do a PhD in international education.

While in graduate school at Webster University, I noticed the wonderful study abroad opportunities that were offered to undergraduate students. I remembered saying to myself I wish there was a two week study abroad option, however I quickly recanted and said, but they would never have such a short program. To my surprise, I received an email in November 2011 from Webster’s main campus in St. Louis, Missouri. The email encouraged me to add international experience to my resume by participating in a hybrid course, which consisted of 6 weeks of online course work and two weeks abroad.

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