SIO Professional Development Program on Internationalization

Aug 20, 2019

 Big Ten university staff visit MX universities

The Big Ten Academic Alliance Senior International Officers' Staff Development Program on Internationalization is an eight-month opportunity for early-to-mid-career staff to deepen their knowledge about the internationalization of higher education and the international partnerships and global organizations that are a part of this work. Participants engaged in a series of monthly online seminars and a capstone, five-day trip to Mexico City in summer 2019. While in Mexico,  the cohort visited partner institutions of Big Ten Academic Alliance member universities, the U.S. Embassy and the Mexican Ministry of Higher Education, Indiana University’s Global Gateway Office, and other educational and cultural sites.

Program participant Erika Hepburn, Assistant Director, Office of Global Strategies at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln credits this program with sparking new ideas for partnerships and engagements with Mexico and other partner countries, stating “I was ignited with so many ideas for increasing the mission and international activities of UNL and the [The Big Ten Academic Alliance] while I was in Mexico. I was given the tools through this program to follow up on these ideas and leads, and I will be bringing this new knowledge and ideas to our leadership.” Participation in this program also made Hepburn aware of the Alliance’s network of relationships and partnerships, of which she is now a part. Hepburn shared that “[w]e have such a wealth of resources and opportunities to be shared across institutions, and I am already continuing these conversations with [consortium] colleagues and friends I made during this program. Together we are stronger and better!”

With a goal of gaining a better understanding of campus internationalization strategies and mechanisms, and exploration of their own role in the context of their institutions' internationalization efforts, the program has three phases: 
PHASE I:  Pre-departure Seminars (February-May)
These monthly online seminars provided foundational knowledge about issues of importance to international higher education; an opportunity to study, discuss and hear Senior International Officers' views and prospectives; and facilitated each participant's identification of a topic or challenge area related to internationalization at their home campus.

PHASE II:  Field Experience in Mexico City (June 23-29)
In Mexico City, the group engaged with colleagues at the  Universidad Nacional Autonoma de México, Universidad Panamericana Ciudad de México, the Indiana University Mexico Gateway Office, and Mexican and United States governmental offices. Through these conversations and experiences, participants gained greater appreciation and understanding of various approaches to international partnerships, insight into the experiences of international students and scholars, and connected with many people and organizations that partner with or support our institutions' international education, research, and engagement missions.

PHASE III:  Post-trip Seminars (Fall 2019)sign welcoming BTAA to Universidad Panamericana Ciudad de México
An important part of the program is the final phase, in which participants reflect on their experiences with the program and share new perspectives and knowledge within their offices and across their universities. Each participant is asked to look for and share how they applied what they learned in service of their international students, scholars, research, and partnerships.

Please contact Katherine Galvin or Laurel Rosch for more about the Big Ten Academic Alliance's SIO programs.

  • International

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