I Took the Decision of Offering Myself the Greatest Gift: I Went to Study Abroad

I Took the Decision of Offering Myself the Greatest Gift: I Went to Study Abroad

Guest Contributor: Marie-Frédérique Ouellet


While taking a sip of my masala chai with alu paratha, I am staring at these kids throwing colorful powder at each other, laughing and running in every direction. The city is calm, the sun is clear and the air is fresh. So much to see, so much to taste, so much to discover: Welcome to India.

Even after two years, some people still ask with stupefaction, why I left Canada for India to pursue my Master’s Degree and if I did not have universities in my own country. Most of the time I quickly answer that I came to India to specialize in agriculture economics and Indo-Canadian relations but that is just one part of the truth. The other part is that after my undergraduate program, I made the decision of offering myself the greatest gift: I went to study abroad. I chose myself for two years. A gift from yourself to yourself that changes your whole perception of life and its intrinsic value. Studying abroad leaves you by yourself with your knowledge, culture and values in the middle of a whole new world where the culture is different, the religions are different, the language and food habits are different, where everything is to discover. The real challenge is to find the strength to adapt in this new world without losing who you are.

After my studies in International Economics and Development at the University of Ottawa, I wanted to become an economist. Specifically, I wanted to become a development economist. The kind that can bring efficient economic solutions and alternatives based on a deep understanding of the social, cultural and historical background. After my third year of Bachelor’s Degree, I was selected by the Ontario/Maharashtra Goa Student Exchange Program to pursue the Student India Program in Symbiosis International University in Pune, India. I came back to Canada to finish my last year of undergraduate studies and started to prepare my application to conduct a Master’s Degree in India. After my graduation, I received the Commonwealth Scholarship Plan in collaboration with the Indian Council for Cultural Relations and the Department of Foreign Affairs of Canada, which gave me the opportunity to pursue the Master’s Degree in Economics at Hyderabad Central University in India.

It took me almost a year to plan and prepare what was going to be the biggest trip of my life, with myself as my only travel partner and my humility and curiosity as carrying luggage. To anyone thinking about pursuing a degree or a semester abroad, few steps can guide you:

lmap1) Choose a country, read about its culture, history and social development. See if it peaks your curiosity to the point where you are determined to live and experince it by yourself.

Look for the different educational programs that are offered by the host country and if the diploma obtained abroad will be recognized by your home country or own institution. You can discuss with your teachers and determinethe added-value of this diploma to your career. Discuss with your parents and friends about your project, ask their opinion and determine the pros and cons.

3) Look for scholarships offered by the Provincial and Federal governments, such as the Department of Global Affairs Canada, NGOs, organizations for international studies, LOGIQ for students from Quebec, Indian Council for Cultural Relations, Canada India Education Council, Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute, Commonwealth Scholarship Plan, Ontario/Maharashtra Goa Student Exchange Program. Also, many Canadian universities are offering scholarships to students willing to complete a semester abroad.

4) Construct a budget of the expected expenditures and fees. Try to determine the total cost of this project, including flight tickets, visa fees, accommodations and living expenditures, fix a budget if you want to travel across the country. By preparing your project in advance, you can find many helpful ideas, you can ask for the flight tickets as birthday or graduation gift from your family and friends, save money from part-time work to achieve this specific goal, work with NGOs and seek out sponsorships. If there is no solution, it is because there was no problem at the beginning.

5) Make an appointment at a travel health clinic. The specialists will give you advice and preventions for the specific country you will travel to, discuss with your doctor about the different options to ensure your security abroad. For example, ask about the prevention of malaria, hepatitis, rabies, yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis and if you should receive any specific vaccine before leaving.

6) Learn more about the culture, the university where you will study, the basic courtesies of the country, watch documentaries on the social challenges the country is facing, learn more about their history and language. The better your preparation, the easier your adaptation to this new environment will be.

7) Enjoy, learn, share and make a lot of friends.

lmapI hope this article brings to you the fire required to conduct what I believe is the biggest trip of your life. You will face challenges, culture shocks and misunderstandings, but you need to look beyond that. You will discover a new culture, make life-long friends, learn a new language, you will see landscapes that you can normally only see in movies. The memories and friendships created will remain long after the completion of your studies. By the way, the picture was taken in Munnar, Kerala in December 2015. Yes, life as an international student is pretty boring as you can see 😉  Give it a try, you will be surprised!

ON, PEI negotiate PSE agreements with India

Source: Times of India via Academica

Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne and PEI Premier Wade MacLauchlan have returned from their 10-day trade mission to India and have negotiated new agreements for postsecondary institutions. According to a press release by the Ontario Government, the ON delegation participated in a signing ceremony announcing agreements involving Ryerson University, McMaster University [CIEC Academic Member], Sheridan College, Algonquin College, and Seneca College. According to Canadian Broadcasting Company, the University of Prince Edward Island signed MOUs with two Indian universities.

Canadian PSE Representatives Travel to India on Trade Mission

Source: Ontario Business Mission to India Press Kit via Academica

Representatives from five Canadian colleges and nine universities have travelled with Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne on a trade mission to India. An ON release states that the purpose of the mission is to “strengthen economic, political and cultural ties with the world’s third-largest economy.” The creation of new institutional partnerships between the two countries features as one of the highest priorities for the participating Canadian PSE institutions. Prince Edward Island Premier Wade MacLauchlan has also joined the mission, along with 12 delegates from that province.

UFV Launches Co-Curricular Record Program on India Campus

Source: UFV via Academica

The University of the Fraser Valley has launched what is reportedly India’s first postsecondary Co-Curricular Record program in Chandigarh. This program, previously implemented on the Canadian UFV campus for 9,000 students, offers an authorized record of students’ validated experiences outside the classroom, allowing experiences to be measured against the learning outcomes that the UFV community has outlined as necessary for graduates. “Having our students graduate from UFV with two transcripts, one recognizing their academic achievement and the other recognizing their learning achieved outside of the classroom, will give our graduates an advantage in the employment market and for professional and graduate schools,” said Associate Director, UFV India, Gurneet Singh Anand.

Indian Government Proposes Opening Up IITs to Foreign Students

Source: The PIE News

Foreign students could soon be permitted to study at prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology, due to a new proposal from the Human Resource Development Ministry that it hopes will attract more international students and raise the country’s standing in global academic league tables.

For the complete article, please visit The PIE News.

PSE Institutions Need to Better Measure Value of Internationalization

Source: Times Higher Education via Academica

While many PSE institutions consider internationalization inherently good, few do an adequate job of measuring just how much value they provide to their international students, writes a contributor for Times Higher Education. Rather than asking only about inputs (e.g. the number of exchange agreements) or outputs (e.g. the number of outgoing students), institutions need to ask questions like “what was achieved by, say, increased student mobility? How was teaching, research or social engagement improved because of our internationalisation strategy?” Until schools are prepared to answer these questions in meaningful ways, the author concludes, internationalization efforts will remain shallow and ineffective.

CBIE Releases Brief on International Education Leadership

Source: CBIE via Academica

CBIE has released a new brief reviewing the current status of international education leadership and gaps identified in this area of the international education sector. The brief identifies eight unique types of leadership that are plotted on a quadrant based on their position (internal or external) and level of flexibility (flexibility or stability). CBIE study leaders compared the responses of emerging and experienced leaders on the nature of their current roles and the roles they identified as needing strengthening in the future. The groups agreed that it was important to improve their skills as mentors, innovators, and brokers. The brief makes a number of recommendations, including increased collaboration between new and veteran leaders in the field.

TRU Signs Proposals with Two Indian Universities

Source: Thompson Rivers University via Academica

Thompson Rivers University has signed proposals with two of India’s largest schools, I K Guraj Punjab Technical University and Chandigarh University. The agreements will allow students to complete the first half of a tourism management or computing science program in India, and the second half on TRU’s Kamloops campus. “In the 21st century, the world has become smaller and smaller and we need to provide students the opportunities to gain global competency while exposing our faculty to international collaboration,” said TRU Associate Vice-President International and CEO Global Operations Baihua Chadwick. “I have no doubt these initiatives will enhance TRU’s academic and professional competitiveness.”

India Approves Renewal of Higher Ed MOU with Canada

Source: Business Standard via Academica

India’s Union Cabinet has approved the renewal of an existing MOU with Canada that will commit both countries to enhanced cooperation in higher education. The countries originally signed an MOU in June 2010, which offered the possibility of renewing the agreement for a further five years. The MOU reportedly aims to recognize “the immense potential of collaboration between Higher Education Institutions of Canada and India and to further develop the existing bilateral relations in the field of Higher Education and Research.” Approval for the MOU was issued directly by the Union Cabinet and its chair, Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi.

Canada’s Global Competitiveness Possibly Hindered by Study Permit Delay

Source: The PIE News via Academica

According to a recent study by CBIE, lengthy study permit processing times pose a concern for Canada’s global competitiveness by limiting both the effectiveness of the federal International Education Strategy and the effectiveness of PSE recruitment efforts across the country. Nigeria was particularly noted as a site needing improvement, as there was an 18-month average processing time in Nigeria, one of Canada’s biggest source markets, while Chile had an average wait of 9 days. “We’re probably one of the most difficult countries for Nigerian students to study in, but they’re the fastest growing group of students who are coming to Canada,” said CBIE research manager Janine Knight-Grofe.

Number of International Students in Canada Triples Over Past 20 years

Source: Statistics Canada via Academica

Over the past two decades, the number of international students admitted annually to Canada has nearly tripled, according to a new study by Statistics Canada. Entitled “International students who become permanent residents in Canada,” the report examines the number and characteristics of international students as well as their transition to permanent residence. For the earliest cohort studied (1990 to 1994), a plurality were enrolled in primary or secondary school; for the most recent cohort (2010 to 2013), a plurality were enrolled in non-university postsecondary. The report suggests that students from countries with “lower levels of economic development and less favourable social and political environments” were more likely to seek permanent residence in Canada.

Canadian PSE Enrolment Up 1.2%, Now Topping 2 Million

Source: Statistics Canada via Academica

According to Statistics Canada, enrolments in public postsecondary institutions rose 1.2% for the 2013/14 academic year, bringing the total to more than 2 million. International enrolment rose even more quickly, up 2.5% over the previous year, and now accounts for nearly 10% of total enrolments. Enrolment rose the most in Ontario, followed by Quebec and British Columbia. Roughly 60% of enrolments were at the bachelor’s level or above. 56.3% of all students were women, but this proportion was only 45.6% for international students. Enrolment rose fastest in the category of architecture, engineering, and related technologies.

International Enrolment in Canada Increases by 10% from 2013 to 2014

Source: Canadian Bureau for International Education via Academica

International enrolment at Canadian schools increased by 10% from 2013 to 2014, according to a new report by CBIE. Students came primarily from China, India, South Korea, France, and Saudi Arabia, with 33% of the international student population coming from China. Just over half of the surveyed international students reportedly intended to apply for permanent residency after their studies. The survey revealed that international students were largely satisfied with their experience, with 95% reporting that they would recommend Canada as a study destination. “International education is critical to the future of Canada and Canadians,” said CEO and President of CBIE Karen McBride, who highlighted pathway programs as a great opportunity for Canadian higher education.

Immigrant Students Have Higher Success Rate in Education, Study Says

Source: Statistics Canada via Academica

Immigrant students are outperforming Canadian-born students in their educational success, says a recent report from a triennial study by Statistics Canada. Overall, immigrant students were found to have higher levels of high school and university education than Canadian-born students; they were also more likely to report that they expected to, and did, graduate from university. According to the study’s authors, background characteristics of immigrants, such as their country of origin, explained some of the interregional differences in university success. Canadian-born students whose parents were immigrants had similar regional patterns of success as third-or-higher-generation Canadian children.

Globe and Mail Releases 2015 Report on Colleges

Source: Globe & Mail via Academica

The Globe and Mail has released its 2015 Report on Colleges, which aims to provide students considering enrolling in Canadian colleges with the information they need to make an informed decision. The report includes a number of articles covering topics such as curriculum personalization, funding for facilities, and college business incubators. The report also includes a feature story about how many of Canada’s young workers are heading to college in response to the downturn in Canada’s oil sector, highlighting the advantages to be gained from colleges’ collaboration with companies and community organizations.

HEQCO Releases Two Studies on International Students in Canada

Source: HEQCO via Academica

The Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO) has released two new studies examining the international student population in Canada, with a particular focus on Ontario. In the report titled “International Students in Ontario’s Postsecondary Education System, 2000-2012,” researchers from Wilfrid Laurier University found that the average international student in Canada is male and attends college in the GTA. While the total number of international students in the country has grown, the number attending college has risen more quickly. In “The Global Competition for International Students as Future Immigrants,” researchers from York University and the University of Guelph explored ways to improve the experience for international students. They found that many ON universities have programs that target first-year students but lack supports for upper-year students. They also documented a need to “enhance interactions between international and domestic students.”

New AB Budget Adds $280M to PSE Funding, Freezes Tuition for 2 Years

Source: Calgary Herald via Academica

The new Alberta budget for 2015–16 will increase funding to the province’s universities, colleges, and technical schools by $280 M compared to last year. The funding will help support a two-year tuition freeze for students, a $40 M boost to base funding for schools, and a $183 M increase in student loans. $581 M of the $5.7 B overall budget will be set aside for eight major campus expansion projects. The funding announcement was met with relief by many higher education stakeholders, including Erik Queenan, President of the Students’ Association at Mount Royal University, who said that students were “really encouraged to hear the government is acknowledging the importance of post-secondary, especially in these turbulent economic times.”

PSE students should stop asking, “When am I going to use this?”

Source: Chronicle of Higher Education via Academica

It is time for everyone to stop asking “when am I going to use this?” when thinking about the things one learns in a postsecondary classroom, writes a Chronicle of Higher Education contributor. She goes on to argue that the biggest problem with this question is that it makes usefulness the measure of all value. To this extent, she adds, “our obsession with utility — and our childish demands for it to reveal itself immediately lest we ‘waste’ a precious second of our time that could be better spent watching Netflix — reveals our ugliest selves.” The majority of the time, students ask this question when material bores them, not when they are genuinely wondering about what skills they may or may not need in the future. The solution, the author concludes, is to learn to be okay with not knowing how the things we learn today might benefit us tomorrow. 

India Moots Inbound Campaign, Foreign Provider Bill

Source: The PIE News

Prime Minister Narendra Modi is ramping up efforts to promote India as a global study destination, planning a Study in India campaign and revisiting legislation to make it easier for foreign higher education providers to set up branch campuses in the country.

The Ministry of Human Resource Development has been in consultation with higher education institutions about how to increase the number of overseas students at Indian institutions, including through a Study in India campaign.

The plan is set to be included into the New Education Policy currently being drafted by Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party, and could include funding for selected institutions to develop the infrastructure to accommodate more international students.

For the full article, please visit The PIE News.

PSE Must Encourage Experiential Learning, Failure

Source: Globe & Mail via Academica

Canada’s future success will depend heavily on how well we encourage students to develop innovation skills, say members of a Globe and Mail panel. One of the best ways to do this, they add, is to provide students with the ability to try new things and to risk failure through experiential learning. Ryerson University President Sheldon Levy highlights the University of Waterloo as a strong example of a school with an effective co-op education program. “Our strategies, policies and resources have got to put young people more in the centre of the innovation agenda rather than being peripheral to it,” Levy adds. “Therefore our education systems have got to start looking at innovation as a core competency.”

Universities Canada, CICan, CAUT Welcome New Government

Source: Academica

Representatives across Canada’s PSE community have delivered messages of welcome and congratulations to Canada’s new Liberal government. Universities Canada has said that it looks forward to working with Prime Minister-designate Justin Trudeau “to advance dialogue and action on higher education, research and innovation.” Members of the Canadian Association of University Teachers have also expressed their congratulations, although they urge the incoming government to act quickly on promises made during the campaign, especially as these promises relate to PSE. Among the priorities listed by the CAUT are the restoration of the mandatory long-form census, the “unmuzzling” of Canadian scientists, and the improvement of the Canada Student Grants and Canada Student Loans Program. Colleges and Institutes Canada has said that it hopes the new government will support “innovative training and applied research that make Canada’s colleges and institutes some of the strongest in the world.”

Political Newbie Chandra Arya Wins Seat in Nepean

Source: Ottawa Sun via Ravi Kumar of Hindi Center

Chandra Arya, a former high tech executive with no previous political experience, got a rock star reception as he walked into his Nepean campaign office full of giddy Liberal supporters.

The party was in full swing as people cheered and hugged as the Liberals took over Canada, riding by riding. That was even before Arya, who wanted to show up only after the full results were known, finally arrived.

Ayra, who called the 11-week campaign a “long journey,” saying his priorities include supportingpublic servants and working toward affordable housing.

For the full article, please visit the Ottawa Sun.

International Students Choices for Master’s Programs Differs by Nationality, Says New Report

Source: World Education News & Reviews via Academica

International students from different countries often look for different things when choosing to pursue a graduate degree in the US, according to a new report by World Education Services (WES). The study, titled “How Master’s Students Choose Institutions: Research on International Student Segmentation,” found that over 70% of Chinese students were able to pay more than $30 K per year for their studies and 58% were able to pay over $40 K. Nearly 70% of students from India, by comparison, had a budget of under $30 K. The survey also found that Chinese students valued institutional reputation most highly when choosing which institution to attend, while students from India were more likely to focus on the best return for their investment.

International Experience Becoming Essential for MBA Programs

Source: Canadian Business via Academica

International business experience is quickly becoming an essential part of an MBA graduate’s CV, reports Canadian Business. As a result, more of the country’s MBA programs are adding international exchanges and fellowships to their curricula. Some major business schools that have recently added these components are the Sobey School of Business at Saint Mary’s University, the Rotman School of Business at the University of Toronto, and the Asper School of Business at the University of Manitoba.

With Declining Domestic Enrolment, Ottawa’s PSE Institutions Recruit More International Students

Source: CBC via Academica

Ottawa’s PSE institutions are seeing ever-larger numbers of international students this fall, reports CBC. As of last week, the University of Ottawa had 1,350 new international students registered, its largest number so far. uOttawa’s Acting Manager of Media Relations Néomie Duval said that the school is focusing on international recruitment to offset a decreasing domestic student population in Canada. Algonquin College’s Doug Wotherspoon, VP of International, Communication, and Strategic Priorities, agreed with the approach, adding that “if you have rising costs, you have to have growth for you to survive. So obviously when your domestic numbers are going down you want to supplement that and keep growing, so international is the place to look for that.”

Fleming College approved as Registered Education Provider by Project Management Institute

Fleming College approved as Registered Education Provider by Project Management Institute

Source: Fleming College

[CIEC Academic Member] Fleming College has been approved as a Registered Education Provider (REP) by the world’s largest project management member association, the Project Management Institute (PMI).

The designation ensures that Fleming has met PMI’s rigorous quality criteria for course content, instructor qualification, and instructional design. REPs are organizations that have been approved by PMI to help project managers achieve and maintain the Project Management Professional (PMP) ® , Program Management Professional (PgMP)® and other PMI professional credentials. The college now joins more than 1,500 REPs in more than 80 countries.

“This brings us closer to our goal of having Fleming College’s School of Business become the Project Management hub for Eastern Ontario,” said Raymond Yip Choy, Coordinator of Fleming’s Project Management program.

“We have worked to create strong links with PMI. The program has high student and employer satisfaction rates as well as newly-established community links through the completion of successful applied projects and internships. We look forward to further enhancing the reputation of this program and expanding our opportunities to provide certification in this growing career field.”

In addition to the designation, Fleming hosts the PMI Group Examination three times a year. This provides an opportunity for students and industry members to write the professional certifications at the college.

The Project Management program is a post-graduate certificate program offered at the Sutherland Campus. Through classroom sessions and applied project experience, students learn and practice how to initiate, execute and close projects incorporating scheduling tools, budgeting principles, human resource management, risk management and quality management. Communication and leadership skills are also developed and honed throughout the program. For more information on the program, visit: flemingcollege.ca/programs/project-management.

About Project Management Institute (PMI)
Project Management Institute is the world’s leading not-for-profit professional membership association for the project, program and portfolio management profession. Founded in 1969, PMI delivers value for more than 2.9 million professionals working in nearly every country in the world through global advocacy, collaboration, education and research. PMI advances careers, improves organizational success and further matures the profession of project management through its globally recognized standards, certifications, resources, tools academic research, publications, professional development courses, and networking opportunities. As part of the PMI family, Human Systems International (HSI) provides organizational assessment and benchmarking services to leading businesses and government, while ProjectManagement.com and ProjectsAtWork.com create online global communities that deliver more resources, better tools, larger networks and broader perspectives. Visit us at www.PMI.orgwww.facebook.com/PMInstitute and on Twitter @PMInstitute.

About Fleming College
Located in the heart of Central Ontario, Fleming College has campus locations in Peterborough, Lindsay, Cobourg and Haliburton. Named for famous Canadian inventor and engineer Sir Sandford Fleming, the college features more than 100 full-time programs in Arts and Heritage, Business, Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences, General Arts and Science, Health and Wellness, Justice and Community Development, Skilled Trades and Technology, and Continuing Education. Fleming College has 5,900 full-time and 10,000 part-time students, and more than 68,000 alumni.

Reverse Culture Shock Common in International Exchanges, but Not Often Discussed

Source: University Affairs via Academica

Writing in University Affairs, Concordia University student Pierre-Alexandre Bolduc recounts how his return to Montreal after two semesters abroad was “as much of an experience and adaptation as going abroad.” Reverse culture shock is a common, but unexpected and under-discussed sensation of “re-culturing” one’s self to a place, according to Concordia Psychology Lecturer Dorothea Bye. She believes that exchange students need to “talk to people who have gone through the same things as they did,” and Concordia International is considering offering resources specifically to returning exchange students. Concordia sends between 350 and 400 students on international exchange every year.

Students and Parents Differ in Their Views on PSE, Jobs

Source: Ipsos via Academica

A recent poll has revealed the differences between parents and students in their perception of why students attend PSE. Students were significantly more likely than their parents to report that one of their motivations in attending PSE was to satisfy their parents. In terms of career, parents were more likely than students to believe that finding a meaningful and fulfilling job would make their children happy. While attending PSE “to maximize the chances of having a career that [they] will be happy with” was the most influential factor for both groups, parents were significantly more likely to cite this reason than students.

Edu-Canada Canadian MBA Showcase Tour 2015

Source: Indo-Canadian Business Chamber via High Commission of Canada

Following on the success of the inaugural Edu-Canada Canadian MBA Showcase Tour in September 2014, the High Commission of Canada in India is pleased to announce the 2015 Edu-Canada Canadian MBA Showcase Tour. Once again co-organized with the Indo-Canadian Business Chamber (ICBC), this second iteration will visit Bengaluru, Chennai, Mumbai, Delhi, and Chandigarh. Canadian universities offering MBA programs to international students will be highlighting their course offerings, scholarships, student experience, accessibility, affordability, and career paths in an all-Canada context.

Universities Canada Releases Federal Election Policy Briefs

Source: Academica

Universities Canada has released a series of four policy briefs outlining its positions on issues relevant to the upcoming federal election. On the topic of student mobility, they recommend that the next government initiate “a bold program of support for short-term domestic and international student mobility” to improve graduates’ understanding of domestic and international issues. On labour market issues, they argue for the creation of more paid co-op and internship opportunities. They advocate increased programming funding for Indigenous students and communities as well as more student support and financial assistance. On the issue of research and innovation, they recommend sustained funding for the federal granting councils and enhanced support for early-career researchers and international partnerships.

Why Indians Study Abroad

Source: Education Times

With a topic inspired by almost 10 years spent working within the Indian community in Australia and living in India, Nonie Tuxen’s thesis explores the growth of the ‘new’ Indian middle class and their desire for overseas education.

On her choice of topic, she says: “During my undergraduate, I worked part-time in an Indian restaurant and got a first-hand experience of Indian students’ dreams and aspirations to study overseas. Also, my parents had come to India for their honeymoon so I was quite interested about the country. I visited India many times over the years and witnessed the change in the country’s upwardly mobile middle class and their fascination for overseas education.”

Tuxen says that countries should understand the value of studying abroad for international students and allow work rights for at least two to three years. “My research indicates that gaining professional exposure in an international setting is a key factor in determining what and where young Indians choose to study.”

To read the full article, visit the Education Times.

Sheridan Offers New App to Assist International Students

Source: Sheridan College via Academica

Sheridan College has launched an app designed to offer comprehensive assistance to international students applying to and enrolling in its programs. The initial version of the app—launched in May 2015—provides those who downloaded it with help uploading study permits, airport arrival assistance, a registration checklist, and a space to store emergency contact information. It also offers guidance with day-to-day activities like grocery shopping, banking, telecom troubleshooting, and finding places of worship. The app is available in a variety of languages and has been downloaded over 1,100 times to date.

Indian State Funds Study Abroad for Minority Students

Source: The PIE News

India’s Telangana state government has approved the first round of scholarships funding 258 low-income students to study abroad at postgraduate level, it has announced.

Earlier this year the Minorities Welfare Department for the southern Indian state announced that it was allocating INR25 crore (US$3.8m) to the new Chief Minister’s Overseas Study Scheme.

It will enable 500 students from low-income families to study abroad each year, with a third of the available places earmarked for women.

In order to apply, students must be no older than 35 and they or their guardians must have a total annual income of no more than Rs. 2 lakhs (US$3,000).

For more details, read the full story on The PIE News.

Study Abroad a Force for Peace, Even If It Does Not Build Sense of Community

Source: International Studies Quarterly via Academica

In the Washington Post, political science professor Calvert Jones has written about a recent study she conducted on over 500 study abroad participants at 11 US postsecondary institutions. Surprisingly, she said, the survey did not support the commonly held belief that cross-border contact “promotes a sense of shared international community.” However, the thesis that cross-border contact reduces the perception of threat was still supported. Finally, returning students displayed stronger feelings of nationalism, were prouder of their home country, and more patriotic; however they did not display an increased belief in American superiority. “Cross-border contact may still be a strong force for peace,” Jones concludes, “even if community is not the underlying mechanism.”

Top International Students Perform Cutting-Edge Research in GTA

Source: Toronto Star via Academica

Nearly 750 international university students have come to the Greater Toronto Area to partner with Canadian professors to produce cutting-edge research. The students have come as part of Mitacs’s Globalink program, which pays the participating students a set wage to visit Canada for a 12-week summer research period. Over three years, Canada has provided $20 M to attract these students to Canada. The research being undertaken this year includes the creation of robots that can land on asteroids, new marketing channels directed toward Baby Boomers, and solar-powered charging stations for electric cars. Visiting students have come primarily from India, China, Brazil, France, Mexico, and Australia.

Canadian Universities Must Overcome 3 Impediments to Globalization, writes Carleton president

Source: University Affairs via Academica

Carleton University [CIEC Member] President Roseann O’Reilly Runte writes in an editorial for University Affairs that Canadian universities must do more to address the ongoing demand to become more global. To this end, she says that universities must work to build their international reputations while making sure that the proper resources are in place for international students to succeed after enrolment. But Runte adds that attracting more international students is only one side of the internationalization coin, the other being the need to send more Canadian students abroad. To achieve success in this regard, Canada will need to overcome three impediments that Runte identifies as financial, linguistic, and structural.

US News and World Report Encourages Enrolment in Canadian Universities

Source: US News & World Report via Academica

Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Canada has the potential to offer a world-class education at a fraction of the price one might find in the US, UK, or Australia, says US News and World Report. According to the Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE), 336,400 international students came to study in Canada in 2014 compared to 184,150 in 2008. US News and World Report adds that students planning to study outside the US should give strong consideration to Canada because of its affordable tuition rates and high-quality universities, quoting one student who celebrated receiving her Canadian education “without having to sell [her] kidneys to pay the tuition.”

Internationalization Requires More Than High Number of Foreign Students, Report Says

Source: Full Report via Academica

Having a large cohort of foreign students does not make a university successfully “international,” says a recent report from the University of Warwick. The report critiques current UK internationalization rankings for placing too much emphasis on the quantity of international students at an institution and not giving enough weight to how effectively universities socially integrate these students with their domestic peers. The study found that general student satisfaction rates for both domestic and international students dropped as the proportion of international students on campuses rose. According to the authors, this effect is likely the result of too much institutional emphasis on the quantitative “structural” aspects of internationalization and not enough emphasis on the “social” aspects.

Canadian Immigration Lawyer Warns of Challenges for Foreign Students

Source: Canadian Lawyer via Academica

Canada will have to closely monitor the performance of its shifting policies toward education- and business-based immigration if it wishes to preserve its fundamental diversity, writes Jennifer Nees, a Toronto-based business immigration lawyer. While the Pan Am Games have given Canadians recent cause to celebrate their country’s diversity, Nees adds that “the last seven months have shown a different story in terms of our current immigration policy.” While earlier systems might have offered a clearer path for foreign students to obtain work permits and begin new careers in Canada, Nees adds that “now, however, these students are getting lost in a maze of complex new systems with operating glitches and inconsistent processing.”

Business Dean Calls for Adaptive MBA Programs

Source: University Business via Academica

MBA programs must capitalize on innovative educational technologies and rethink their traditional student bodies if they wish to keep pace with the changing demands of the international business world, writes Judy Bullock, University Dean of Business at American InterContinental University. For Bullock, a major part of this new shift will be for MBA programs to use part-time and online learning models to open their offerings to a broader range of students. These efforts will help MBA programs get past the paradigm in which they are reserved for “the elite, accessible only to those of a certain academic or professional pedigree who could dedicate themselves to a traditional, full-time program.” To this end, MBA programs need to “recognize the different learning styles, needs, and experiences” of those who can bring value to the business community.

SFU Partners with Online Course Provider

Source: 24 Hours Vancouver via Academica

[CIEC Member] Simon Fraser University has partnered with the online education company Kadenze to offer SFU students access to online courses that might not be otherwise available through the university. The system will allow students to receive SFU academic credit for courses they take with recognized international institutions through the online portal. The program allows students to browse course offerings for free, then charges varying membership prices for services such as feedback on assignments or taking full-credit courses. Kadenze said that the cost of full courses starts at $300.

Canada and India Invest $3.7M to Address Infrastructure, Water Challenges

Source: IC-IMPACTS via Academica

IC-IMPACTS, India’s Department of Science and Technology, and India’s Department of Biotechnology have invested a total of $3.7 M to fund nine research projects in the infrastructure and water sectors. Since 2014, IC-IMPACTS—a network of Centres of Excellence funded by the Federal Government of Canada—and India have partnered to strengthen innovation, especially through their Water for Health initiative. This past year, the project attracted 80 applications from 76 Canadian and Indian institutions. The initiative’s panel ultimately chose to fund nine research projects that address significant infrastructure and water-based challenges.

Minister Fast Encourages Ontario Companies to “Go Global” in India

Source: Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada

International Trade Minister Ed Fast today hosted a Go Global workshop in Brampton, Ontario, to highlight tools available to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) that want to take advantage of new export opportunities in India.

India is a priority market under the Government of Canada’s Global Markets Action Plan. During the workshop’s panel discussions, Minister Fast encouraged companies to leverage the many federal government tools available to support Canadian companies looking to export to India. The Minister also noted that Canada continues to work closely with the government of India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi to create new opportunities for businesses.  

Minister Fast announced that the Invest Canada – Community Initiatives (ICCI) and the Global Opportunities for Associations (GOA) programs are now accepting applications for an additional round of funding. The ICCI program provides support to Canadian communities seeking to improve their capacity to attract, retain and expand foreign direct investment. The GOA program provides funding to national associations in support of new or expanded international business development activities in strategic markets and sectors.

Three Canadian Universities Make the CWUR Top 100

Source: Center for World University Rankings via Academica

The Center for World University Rankings (CWUR) has released its 2015 list of the world’s top 1000 universities. Three Canadian universities have made the top ten: the University of Toronto (#32), McGill University (#42), and UBC (#62). CWUR boasts that it is the only global ranking that measures quality and prestige without relying on surveys or submissions of data from the universities themselves. Altogether, there were 33 Canadian universities in the top 1000 in the world.

International Students at Niagara Claim They Were Denied Work Permits for Taking Online Courses

Source: Globe & Mail via Academica

More than 50 Niagara College students have sought legal representation after they were denied Canadian work permits, allegedly because they took online courses as part of their program. Ravi Jain, an immigration lawyer representing the students, says 30 of his clients have already received rejections on their work permit applications since graduating. While international students have received work permits in the past after completing Niagara’s programs, this year they say they are being refused because Citizenship and Immigration Canada considers online courses to be “distance learning.”

Improvement Needed in ON college recruitment of Underrepresented Students, Study Says

Source: University of Windsor via Academica

Three University of Windsor researchers, with funding from the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO), have completed a survey finding that Ontario colleges need to improve their methods for recruiting and retaining students from underrepresented groups. The final report, titled The Recruitment of Underrepresented Groups at Ontario Colleges: A Survey of Current Practices, recommends that colleges address this need by implementing a collaborative provincial model, improving tracking systems, developing universal definitions, and expanding successful programs.

COTR Recognized for Best International Student Experience for Third Consecutive Year

Source: COTR via Academica

The International Graduate Insight Group has recognized the College of the Rockies [CIEC Member] as the best institution in the world for overall international student satisfaction. This is the third consecutive year COTR has been named the top school in Canada in this regard and the second consecutive year it has received the title for best in the world. The designation draws upon the Graduate Insight Group’s International Student Barometer, the largest annual survey of international students in the world, covering the four categories of student arrival experience, learning, living, and support. Among the 183 institutions from 18 countries rated, COTR ranked first in all four categories.

CUSC Releases 2015 Results of Survey of Graduating Students

Source: Canadian University Survey Consortium via Academica

The Canadian University Survey Consortium (CUSC) has released the results of its 2015 Survey of Graduating Students. The survey is based on results from over 18,000 graduates from 36 universities. Overall, the majority of students (59%) said that their experience “met their expectations,” with a further 23% saying it “exceeded their expectations”; just 18% said that their university experience “fell short” of their expectations. Almost nine in ten students were satisfied with their decision to attend university, and 88% of students would recommend their university to others. In terms of life-skills development, universities contributed most to the ability to interact with people from backgrounds different than their own (64%).

uWindsor’s Business School Announces World Health Innovation Network

Source: uWindsor via Academica

The Odette School of Business at the University of Windsor has announced the launch of the Odette World Health Innovation Network (WIN), reportedly the first Canadian health innovation centre with formal collaborative ties to the US. The centre will use these ties to spur health system innovation to support the commercialization of health and life science products. The centre will be led by Anne Snowdon, formerly the academic chair of the International Centre for Health Innovation at Western University’s Ivey School of Business.