The upper levels of university administrations need and want to maintain “a welcoming environment,” said James Dorsett, director of international students and scholars at Michigan State University in Lansing. “It’s the responsibility of the whole institution as a learning institution to be a welcoming and supporting place for all students.” Dorsett pointed to the “You are welcome here” video campaign that many U.S. schools participated in to promote inclusion for international students who might have felt fearful when the executive order was announced.
The strongest defense of JET comes from those who view it as a diplomatic soft-power tool. MOFA officials agreed to support JET because they believed participants would increase their understanding of Japanese society and return home sympathetic toward Japan. [...] “the JET Programme has been wildly successful as a public diplomacy effort for Japan.” Calling it a “vital diplomatic tool."
Principal Ryan Cleary said the idea came from the school's desire to work on cultural learning in an authentic way. "Learning about different cultures is part of the West Hartford curriculum and we do a lot of things with the resources we have," Cleary said. "We wanted to go a step further and learn about another culture through an authentic, real relationship and actually get to know somebody else. We wanted them to find a deeper meaning. We felt this would have a lasting impression."
Syrian students and academics scattered by war have had their careers and education disrupted. We spoke to the founder of the Jamiya Project, which is trying to reconnect Syrian academics to refugee students through blended online and in-person learning. Syria's Higher Education sector has been wrenched apart by the war. Once-flourishing universities have lost professors, students and facilities to violence and the exodus of 5 million people from the country.
Tunisia plans to enhance trade with Brazil, but it also hopes for cooperation from Brazilians to address unemployment among its youth. The goal is to harness Brazil’s experience in startup businesses and technical education.
The PPEM will allow the two countries to exchange information, identify common objectives and strategies and create opportunities for people in both countries to benefit from the sharing of social, cultural and economic capital across government, academia, business and civil society.
China has begun using the One-Belt-One-Road project, rechristened the Belt-and-Road Initiative (BRI), for expanding diplomatic engagement and securing strategic mileage. India might find itself strategically cramped as several countries from Asia and Europe get more committed to the Chinese connectivity plan, leaving India isolated. In a major public diplomacy exercise, China has announced scholarships for at least 3,000 students from countries and regions around BRI.
I decided to embark in the Erasmus Programme in 2007-2008. I landed in Madrid, Spain, at the Universidad Pontificia de las Comillas, thanks to cross-border cooperation with my sending university Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Italy, studying business and marketing, and taking exams that could enhance my job employability, my Spanish speaking and writing skills, and the opportunity of having friends from all over the world. It was a fantastic experience.