There are few moments in modern history in which student mobility has been as globally disrupted as it has been this year.
Mobility teams have dealt with a huge range of challenges, from the repatriation and support of students already abroad when Covid-19 hit, to the disruption of planned mobility and the need to find alternative opportunities for students with compulsory periods of international experience.
Paired with these challenges is existing uncertainty around European mobility after the UK’s exit from the European Union.
In light of the UK's exit from the European Union and Covid-19 pandemic, this conference will look at how institutions can explore opportunities and challenges for mobility in turbulent times.
It will explore:
the reconfiguring of our relationship with Europe and how we can continue to support European mobility within or outside of the next Erasmus+ programme.
building sustainable mobility
crisis management in international mobility
the development of virtual mobility
Most of all, the conference is an opportunity to reflect on the challenges and successes of the last year and discuss strategies for the future, to enable students to continue to benefit from life-changing international opportunities while we are operating and cooperating in uncertain environments.
Our Go International programme helps implement the UK Strategy for Outward Mobility. It works with UK higher education institutions, the Erasmus+ National Agency for the UK, sector agencies, careers services, employer representatives, overseas governments and professional, statutory and regulatory bodies to achieve the strategy's objectives.
Representing the UK higher education sector collectively, Go International works to increase participation in outward student mobility by:
providing an annual overview of mobility data and trends among UK participants, including the type and length of mobility being accessed, the demographics of participation and the most common destinations
supporting higher education staff to promote and deliver outward mobility programmes through a range of professional development events around the UK and an annual conference
delivering a diverse programme of research in collaboration with other sector agencies, providing quantitative and qualitative evidence of the benefits of mobility to UK higher education students
sharing knowledge and good practice across the sector through a biannual mobility network, involving over 70 higher education institutions and related organisations
Professor Colin Riordan, President and Vice-Chancellor, Cardiff University (chair)
Michelle Stewart, President, EAIE, and Director Internationalisation, University of Strathclyde (Humanities & Social Sciences)
Professor Colin Riordan, President and Vice-Chancellor, Cardiff University (chair)
Wim Gabriels, Project Coordinator, Erasmus Student Network
Ailsa Lamont, Director and Founder, Pomegranate Global
Professor Eunice Simmons, EAUC Trustee and Vice-Chancellor at University of Chester
At a time when flying around the world to take part in a mobility programme has not only been brought into question, but also not been logistically possible, new, greener paths to mobility have had to be forged.
How can we grow mobility in a sustainable way, so that students, and in particular students from more disadvantaged backgrounds, can continue to access lifechanging international opportunities that are compatible with greener international strategies.
How can we capitalise on the innovative methods institutions have found to allow students international experiences during these times through virtual opportunities or internationalisation at home, but ensure that this doesn't result in a two-tier system where students who have the capital continue to go abroad physically, while those without go virtual? And how can students themselves practise sustainable mobility?
This session will explore paths to greener, more sustainable mobility that offers the life-changing benefits of an international experience, but that doesn’t threaten the planet.
Vivienne Stern, Director, Universities UK International (UUKi)
Is your institution equipped to respond to a crisis situation facing your students abroad?
As many UK higher education institutions strive to increase their outbound student mobility, we are simultaneously being confronted with a range of world events which have the potential to impact heavily on our students’ wellbeing – take the Hong Kong protests in 2019, Covid-19 in 2020 and the ongoing civil unrest in Chile.
This session will provide you with an understanding of crisis management in the context of international mobility, with case studies from three institutions who have recently been confronted with crisis situations. You’ll be prompted to think critically about your own crisis management readiness and provided with hints and tips for effectively escalating the risk to your senior management team.
Alejandra Vicencio, International Partnerships Manager, Northumbria University
Ian Wiggins, Director of the York-Maastricht Partnership, University of York
Strategic relationships with European partners will be increasingly important for the Future of Mobility post Brexit. York and Northumbria Universities have both developed successful partnerships with Dutch Universities (Maastricht University and Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, respectively) using very different approaches. In this session Ian Wiggins (Director of the York-Maastricht Partnership) and Alejandra Vicencio (International Partnerships Manager at Northumbria) will talk about their experiences in delivering these partnerships, the lessons they have learned in doing so, and the advantages and disadvantages of the different approaches they have taken. The session will also look at the impact of Brexit on European partnerships, and on the differences in partnerships founded first on a research or education (TNE) basis.
Anne May Janssen, Head of European Engagement, Universities UK International
Naquita Lewis, Senior Consultant, Erasmus+ National Agency, British Council
Uncertainty remains about the UK's participation in the new Erasmus+ programme, with negotiations on the UK-EU future relationship ongoing and the development of Plan B national replacement scheme. This session will explore the new Erasmus+ programme, reconfiguring of our relationship with Europe and how we can continue to support European mobility within or outside of the next Erasmus+ programme.
Anne May Janssen, Head of European Engagement at UUKi, will offer the latest available information on negotiations and Erasmus+, alongside progress on a national replacement scheme. Naquita Lewis, Senior Consultant - Erasmus+, at the UK National Agency for Erasmus+ will provide an overview of the higher education aspects of the next Erasmus+ programme.
Dimitra Boutsioukis, Senior International Mobility Manager, Newcastle University
Dr. Mirjam Hauck, Associate Head of School Internationalisation and EDI The Open University, School of Languages and Applied Linguistics
Dr Müge Satar, Lecturer School Director of Internationalisation, Newcastle University, School of Education, Communication, and Language Sciences
Physical mobility remains the most effective way to develop important global skills, however, we cannot ignore the challenges that come with it. The impact of mobility on our climate creates competing and contradicting strategies (sustainability vs. international experience); and how do we ensure that students from all backgrounds have the opportunity to benefit from those opportunities?
Virtual Exchanges can be used to innovate mobility, ensuring that more students can experience international mobility and providing a more environmentally sustainable mobility experience. This session will give an overview of different models for Virtual Exchange and how International Offices can engage with academic colleagues to create those opportunities.
In this session, two colleagues from the Support Centre Inclusive Higher Education (SIHO) will be discussing improving access to outward mobility programmes for students living with disabilities. Valérie Van Hees (Coordinator) and Dominique Montagnese (Expert Inclusive Mobility) will present the findings from a cross-European project funded by the Erasmus+ programme focusing specifically on the mobility of students with disabilities. The project has launched a report Making mobility programmes more inclusive for students with disabilities, as well as a booklet of policy recommendations on this topic.
Professor Colin Riordan took up the post of president and vice-chancellor at Cardiff University on 1 September 2012. Previously he was vice-chancellor of the University of Essex, having been appointed in October 2007. He moved to Essex from Newcastle University, where he had been Pro vice-chancellor and provost of the faculty of humanities and Social Sciences since August 2005.
Professor Riordan is chair of The Conversation (UK), a council member of the Association of Commonwealth Universities and a Board member of the Edge Foundation. He is a fulbright commissioner and chairs Universities UK’s Outward Student Mobility Board.
Wim Gabriels is Project and Policy Officer at the Erasmus Student Network with a focus on Inclusion and Social Impact of International Student Mobility. He gained experience in European Project Management and Student Support as International Relations Officer at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel in Belgium.
Wim combines his expertise in the field of Higher Education with a degree in Strategic Communication and Media Sociology at the University of Antwerp. Active in the field of Diversity and Inclusion and Community Engagement, Wim strives to make Internationalisation of Education contribute to society.
After 25 years of professional experience in international education, including International Director and Pro Vice-Chancellor International roles at three Australian universities, Ailsa founded Pomegranate Global in 2016 to guide the education sector to take action on climate change.
She has since trained with The Climate Reality Project, former US Vice President Al Gore’s foundation to catalyse a global solution to the climate crisis. In 2019 she co-founded CANIE: Climate Action Network for International Educators, a grassroots initiative by international education practitioners who see the need and the opportunity to step up and take greater action on climate.
Vivienne is the Director of Universities UK International (UUKi) which represents UK universities around the world and works to enable them to flourish internationally.
Vivienne has over 20 years’ experience of working in higher education policy and politics at national and international level.
She is a member of several boards and advisory committees, including the Education Sector Advisory Group of the Department for Education /Department for International Trade; the Board of UKRI’s Fund for International Collaboration; the British Council’s Education Advisory Group.
She is a graduate of the University of Cambridge, where she studied English Literature.
Alejandra has been working in International Education for nearly 20 years in several countries in the Americas and in the UK. Her research focus is the value of internationalising higher education as a development tool.
In the last 10 years she has developed international partnerships and projects for three higher education institutions in the UK and has recently led the centralisation of international mobility for Northumbria University which resulted in a dramatic increase in outward mobility. Alejandra also works for Chevening scholarships as a Regional Assessor and EAIE as a Mentor. She has presented at international conferences such as NAFSA and EAIE.
Sarah has been working in student mobility for over 15 years, having previously worked in other international roles within the private and public sectors. Sarah is responsible for the strategic direction of Study Abroad at Liverpool and overseeing the work of the Study Abroad Team.
Also, a member of the UUKi Outward Mobility Network Working Group on Risk Management and along with the rest of the Liverpool Study Abroad Team, have co-ordinated the emergency response for several hundred Liverpool students who were abroad at the time the COVID-19 pandemic arose in the first quarter of 2020.
Anne-May leads Universities UK International (UUKi) European policy and engagement activity, working to maximise the sector’s profile, impact and visibility in Brussels and in other European countries.
Before joining UUKi, Anne-May worked at Neth-ER where she represented the Dutch knowledge field in Brussels. In particular, she represented the interests of the Netherlands Federation of University Medical Centres and Nuffic, the Dutch organisation for international education which includes the Dutch Erasmus+ National Agency. She previously worked at the Dutch Ministry of Economic Affairs and the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sports in The Hague.
She holds an MSc in Public Policy and Human Development, a BA in European Studies and a Bachelor of Business Administration.
Naquita Lewis is a Senior Consultant at the British Council, responsible for the strategic management of Erasmus+ Higher Education at the UK’s Erasmus+ National Agency. Naquita previously worked at the UK’s Quality Assurance Agency for higher education, originally in the International Team and later as QAA’s Business Development Manager.
Naquita has also worked in international education in both HE and FE, developing the outward mobility platform at Cardiff Metropolitan University, and managing the Cambridge English Exam Centre at Cardiff and Vale College.
Eduardo has over 11 years’ experience in international higher education. At Goldsmiths, he oversees the incoming Study Abroad programme and the Go Abroad programme creating opportunities for students to gain international experience through Erasmus, short term summer mobility and virtual global opportunities.
Previously Eduardo worked at the British Council delivering the Language Assistants programme and helping to create and manage Generation UK-India which supported over 1000 students to study and work in India. Having experienced the benefits of studying and work abroad first-hand, Eduardo is passionate about widening participation and ensuring that international opportunities are inclusive and accessible to all.
Michelle Stewart is President of the European Association for International Education (EAIE) and Internationalisation Director (Humanities & Social Sciences) at the University of Strathclyde.
She has worked in higher education for over twenty five years. After graduating in Public Administration she worked for four years in Spain where she developed executive education courses. Having worked in internationalisation for several years, Michelle has a strong commitment to partnership development and student mobility. She has an extensive network of colleagues across the UK and overseas. Michelle's term as President of the EAIE is from September 2020 to 2022
Bob is a Professor of Learning and Teaching with a PhD in Public Health Engineering and 20+ years experience in Higher Education Institutions. He has led a variety of short term study trips to a variety of European countries annually since 2008. Bob was Principal Investigator of the Award Winning (AdvanceHE CATE 2019) PEETS project - a 3 year multidisciplinary and multicultural “Best practice” Erasmus+ Strategic Partnership (SP).
He is currently mentoring the PI for the Entrecomp Certificate Schools Strategic Partnership (Lancaster Grammar School) and embarking on the new SP Sustainable Fashion Employability skills led by Glasgow Caledonian University.
Dominique Montagnese - SIHO is an expert on Inclusive Mobility for SIHO - Support Centre for Inclusive Higher Education. He has been working with international mobility programmes for more than 10 years and with social inclusion in mobility for more than 6 years. He is the initiator of several projects linking inclusion and Erasmus+ mobilities, such as MapAbility, MappED! and the Inclusive Mobility Alliance which he currently chairs.
Dominique contributes to the current development of the platform inclusivemobility.eu, which will be the platform for inclusive mobility in the European Higher Education Area.
Valérie Van Hees graduated from KU Leuven and has accumulated over 20 years of experience in the field of policy and services for minority groups in higher education. She is acknowledged as an expert in several committees on diversity and inclusion in Belgium and Europe, and has developed a specific expertise in the area of social inclusion, inclusive mobility, defining and monitoring underrepresented groups and drafting tailor-made policy plans and support models to enhance social inclusion in higher education.
Valérie Van Hees coordinates the inclusive mobility project ‘Establishing a thought-out Policy Framework on Inclusive Mobility across Europe’ (EPFIME) and ‘Peer Learning Activities and Resources for Social Inclusion in Mobility Programmes (PLAR-4-SIMP).
Dr Mirjam Hauck is Associate Head of School for Internationalisation and EDI at the Open University's School for Languages and Applied Linguistics. Her research and publications explore the interface between online learning of languages and cultures and critical digital literacy, in virtual exchange settings in particular.
Dr Müge Satar is a Lecturer in Applied Linguistics and TESOL, Newcastle University (UK). Her teaching and research focus on foreign language learning and teaching using technology and through online multimodal interaction. Dr Satar is the School director of internationalisation, executive board member of UNICollaboration, and co-editor of the Journal of Virtual Exchange.
Dimitra Boutsioukis has been working in Higher Education for over 12 years. In her current position at Newcastle University’s International Office she is supporting the mobility initiatives of the institution’s Global Strategy. She is responsible for developing and implementing the University’s International Mobility Strategic Plan, which aims to increase both physical and virtual exchanges and to offer opportunities that are accessible to all.
In January 2020, Professor Eunice Simmons joined the University of Chester as Vice-Chancellor after heading up Nottingham Trent University (NTU’s) Academic and Student Affairs directorate for five years. Previously Eunice has worked in diverse institutions including University of London’s Wye and Imperial Colleges, UCLan and the University of Cumbria. She is an environmentalist by academic background and is on the Board of EAUC; the sustainability champion for universities and colleges in the UK.