IIE Blog Opening Minds
IIE Blog Opening Minds

Idea 9: develop creative partnerships with the private sector to raise funds, increase public awareness and link study abroad to careers

By: IIE on Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Rather than simply looking at the private sector for money, explore ways to involve a diverse group with the campaign. Look for ways to promote the private sector and involve it and its leadership as outspoken advocates for study abroad.

  • Encourage university trustees to help broker partnerships with the private sector.
  • Identify corporations with interests overseas to explore funding or internships that would be mutually beneficial.
  • Enlist the support of corporations to provide short-term work visas for U.S. students to gain work experience as part of their study abroad time. 
  • Encourage business schools to reach out to alumni and business leaders to incorporate “global” as part of the curriculum.
  • Identify high-level business leaders to incorporate a message about the importance of international education, study abroad, and global awareness for future workers in their public statements.
  • Host a Generation Study Abroad Think Tank with only the private sector to generate insight, interest and involvement in making a difference on both a local and national level.

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This blog entry summarizes Idea 9 of 11 “Big Ideas” brainstormed during IIE's Generation Study Abroad Think Tank event in March 2014. They are compiled in the IIE Green Paper, “What will it take to Double Study Abroad?


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  • Martin Tillman said:
    6/16/2014 12:39 PM

    I've been addressing the need to link education abroad to student career development for over a decade. My blog, Global Career Compass, focuses down on this theme and related topics. I think there is a new rationale that has emerged for all forms of international education inclusive of study/work/service or volunteering: that there is a necessity to value both the intrinsic and extrinsic outcomes of such experiences. And research - from employers - confirms that they do value such international experience IF students can effectively articulate the value of what they learned when they apply for and are interviewed for positions with firms that seek globally-competent talent.

    I think the field should convene a national meeting of industry leaders to re-affirm what is well documented: that they place a high value on international education as a component of the college experience. A way to build space for partnerships with industry, international NGOS and other organizations is to bring them into the conversation with higher ed leaders [much as NAFSA is now doing with its new conference series of "internationalization" colloquiums for varied professions].

    My chapter on "Employer Perspectives on International Education," in the 2012 SAGE Handbook of International Higher Education details employer research and partnership case studies and outlines the new rationale for linking IE with career development.

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For more than nine decades, the Institute of International Education has been at the forefront of international education. The Opening Minds blog is IIE’s take on how this field continues to change. Here the Institute’s leaders will explore international educational exchange, global student mobility, institutional partnerships, international development, and other topics and trends that are shaping higher education around the world.

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