The Vice-Chancellor with Dr Judy Genshaft of USF

Vice-Chancellor and President of USF to discuss international partnerships at global education conference

On May 1, the Vice-Chancellor and Dr Judy Genshaft of the University of South Florida (USF) will be taking to the floor in an interactive and engaging discussion session at Going Global, the world’s foremost education conference.

Tackling the theme of international partnerships in this informal and conversational session, the two leaders will offer their perspectives on the importance of partnerships in general, and between the two institutions in particular. They will reflect on the evolution of the partnership over the past five years; what the future may hold for the partnership; and what – with the benefit of hindsight – they might have done differently in forging an academic and research alliance.

They will examine the issues through the lenses of inclusion, innovation and impact,  discussing the policy environment; the contribution made to internationalisation by private sector partnerships; the exchange of students, faculty and other staff; and research collaborations.

Prof Sir Steve Smith said: “One of the keys to a truly successful partnership is to link with a similarly ambitious institution; Exeter is currently ranked in the World Top 150 universities, but we want to be World Top 100. We are not going to do that by recruiting more international students.  Rather, it will be achieved by investing in research and teaching initiatives with some of the best universities around the world.”

Students from both institutions will also be invited to share their experiences of the partnership. James Sterne is a third year student taking a BA in Economics with International Study at the University of Exeter Business School who is currently spending his year abroad at USF. He says of his experiences: “Moving abroad in the future has always been something that I’ve considered and this experience has proven to me that I am very capable of doing that one day and has definitely given me the confidence to take advantage of any opportunities that may arise down the road. I have also made so many great friends and had such a good time, and I value these things very highly too! Through the fraternity that I joined I have made lifelong connections around the world, taken part in some amazing and extravagant fundraising events, enjoyed giving my time to help the community on many occasions and been able to really get a good view into the American college experience in one amazing year, which is something I see as priceless.”

Jen Stenback is currently a Sophomore student at USF studying Public Health and Anthropology. Jen attended the Exeter International Summer School completing a Physical Activity and the Environment: 21st Century Medicine pathway in 2013. Jen also holds two academic awards; she is Provost's Scholar at the Honours College at USF and a Fulbright Scholar at the Fulbright-University of Exeter Summer Institute. Jen commented: “My advice to prospective students would be to start researching abroad opportunities early in your undergraduate career and recognise that opportunities like the International Summer School exist which do not require a whole semester or year away from domestic studies. Funding for study abroad exists, so never turn down an opportunity for fear of the cost. Coming from a poor single parent household, travelling the world always seemed like a distant dream. What impacted me the most from my abroad experience, and something which I hope will encourage future students, was the realization that study abroad was possible for me and the encouragement it has given me to pursue other travel and study experiences.”

Date: 22 April 2014

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