International Relations Office

Updates on the University's global engagement activities

Posts By: Tracey Stenson Jukes

International Mobility Students: Leavers' Party 2017

📥  Erasmus+, Event, International Strategy, Mobility

2017 marks two birthdays: after the 50th Anniversary of the University of Bath, the Erasmus Programme turns 30!

In 30 years, 9 million people have benefited from the European scheme, and it is becoming more popular every year. The University of Bath sends an average of 450 students on the Erasmus+ programme every year on both study exchange experiences and work placements. In turn, we receive around 200 incoming students from European partner universities annually, also.

Read more information about the Erasmus Programme’s 30th Anniversary.

The International Mobility Student Leavers’ Party

On Monday 8th May, the International Mobility Office held the second International Mobility Leavers’ Party in the Roman Baths. The event gives current Bath students who will be going abroad in 2017-2018 the opportunity to meet with incoming exchange students.

Shoot ref: 29262 Shoot Date 08052017. International Mobility Leavers’ Party took place at The Roman Baths Great Baths. This is a send-off evening for Bath students going on an exchange abroad in 2017/2018, and incoming exchange students who were at Bath this year and are going home. Introductory speech followed by drinks reception and a photo competition.

Students at the International Mobility Leavers’ Party, The Roman Baths. Image by Anthony Prothero.

We were also joined by University of Bath alumni from Chile and the USA, who decided to stay a bit longer after enjoying the Bath Festival the weekend before.

Encouraging collaboration between attendees

A key concept behind this event is that it is an opportunity for attendees to make connections with their international peers, and to encourage collaboration between them over the following year. As part of this, tasks were arranged for attendees leading up to and during the event.

Around 150 students were welcomed at the Roman Baths with a card explaining their mission for the night: to find someone who will be in the same country as them next year. The first few pairs to come together were awarded prizes.

'Matched Pairs' at International Mobility Leavers’ Party

'Matched Pairs' at International Mobility Leavers’ Party. Image by Anthony Prothero.

Attendees were also asked to vote for the best pictures of the Incoming Students Photo Competition; the theme this year was 'Birthdays and Celebrations'.

• First prize: Anika Klassen (pictured), from Queen’s University (Canada)
• Second prize: Sofia Pavlova from TU Munich (Germany)
• Third prize: Fede Anselmo (Third Prize) from Universidad San Andres (Argentina).

First Prize winner in the Photo Competition: Anika Klassen

First Prize winner in the Photo Competition: Anika Klassen. Image by Anthony Prothero.

Several students have already made plans to reunite with their new friends next year, and the feedback we received was very positive:

“This was an incredible event. As an exchange student, it was truly unforgettable and an amazing way to say goodbye to Bath’.

“I enjoyed that there was an incentive to meet people from the country you're going to/going to the same country as you - and an excuse to go up and speak to them!”

You can also view more photographs of the evening.

The International Relations Office would like to extend particular thanks to Agathe Lairy, International Mobility Coordinator (Outgoing), for organising the event.

 

Visit by Universidad Chileno-Británica de Cultura

📥  Mobility, Visit

We welcomed a delegation from our South American partner, Universidad Chileno-Británica de Cultura (UCBC) on 3 November.

The delegates, Mrs María Cristina Brieba (Vice-Chancellor), Mr Pedro Pfeffer (President) and Mr Pablo Halpern (Vice-President), were here to sign a new student exchange agreement and discuss ways to expand links between the two institutions.

MOU Signing and presentations in the Wessex House Council Chambers

MOU Signing and presentations in the Wessex House Council Chambers

The UCBC delegates met with Professor Peter Lambert, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Learning and Teaching), and Professor Colin Grant, Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Internationalisation), together with representatives from the Department of Politics, Languages & International Studies, and the International Relations Office.

The headquarters of UCBC is located in the city of Santiago, Chile.  The agreement will offer Bath students the opportunity to study and teach in Santiago, and explore the region on their days off. Professor Lambert previously spent time as an English Language Assistant in Chile and was taught by Mrs Brieba.

The delegation visit was part of a tour of their UK partner universities, which also included a meeting with the Royal Patron of UCBC HRH Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex later that week.

MOU Signing and presentations in the Wessex House Council Chambers

MOU Signing and presentations in the Wessex House Council Chambers

 

International Mobility Team: summer activities

📥  Conference, Mobility

You could be forgiven for thinking that over the summer months activity slows in the mobility team, with no students on campus and academics focusing on research, and perhaps we find ourselves with less work.  But that is definitely not the case!

In addition to processing all of the paperwork for incoming students, finalising payments for the outgoing students who are finishing their Erasmus placements, and drafting exchange agreements, we also made time to attend some mobility events and build networks with mobility colleagues from other UK universities.

In June I attended a Westminster Higher Education Forum Seminar on ‘Challenges and Opportunities for Increasing Outward Student Mobility’.  It was a morning full of interesting presentations, and ended with a question and answer session with the panel.  For me, the most interesting and informative talk was given by Frances Rix, a Business Graduate from Kingston University London.  Frances enjoyed her study abroad so much she has become an ambassador for the Erasmus + programme. It was refreshing to hear her talk honestly about overcoming challenges, and how even small achievements can be a cause for celebration when you are adjusting to living in another country and culture.

In August I, along with my colleagues Agathe Lairy and Francesca Ajello, went to Coventry University for a two-day HEURO (Association of UK Higher Education European Officers) workshop.  The main focus of this workshop was European mobility and Erasmus +, and the two days were roughly split into incoming and outgoing – although there was a lot of commonality across the two areas.

Engineering & Computing Building, Coventry University

Engineering & Computing Building, Coventry University

There were informative talks from a number of members. The workshop provided us with the opportunity to discuss challenges and share best practice between members.  One of the sessions I found most useful was about the research that shows links between mobility and employability: less likely to be unemployed, more likely to work abroad, more likely to achieve a 1st or 2.i, and more likely to have a higher management role.

HEURO Workshop, Coventry University

HEURO Workshop, Coventry University

As well as all the facts and figures, this session also covered tips for students to translate a study abroad experience for CV and interviews.  All of this will definitely be useful for Bath students embarking on their final year, and we look forward to sharing this information with them.

International Mobility Coordinators, L to R - Agathe Lairy, Tracey Stenson Jukes & Francesca Ajello

International Mobility Coordinators, L to R - Agathe Lairy, Tracey Stenson Jukes & Francesca Ajello

If you would be interested in having a member of the International Mobility Team talk to your students, please contact us at student-exchanges@bath.ac.uk