academic exchange

When outspoken economics professor Xia Yeliang was dismissed by Peking University (PKU) last month, 136 faculty members at Wellesley College, an elite all-women's school outside Boston, took it personally. They had reason to believe Professor Xia had been fired for his political opinions. And since Wellesley had recently signed a partnership with PKU, the latest in a flood of US universities to set up bridgeheads in China, they figured that made Xia a colleague of theirs.

In its drive to double the number of Japanese youths studying abroad by 2020, the education ministry has launched a campaign involving the private sector, which is eager to hire more graduates with overseas experience. Under the campaign titled “Tobitate! Ryugaku Japan,' the ministry in cooperation with business people, athletes and artists, will stage a series of promotional activities to encourage more young people to seek out educational opportunities in other countries.

Despite efforts to reduce the cost of a college degree, the price tag remains unthinkable for many. And it’s not just the cost of tuition, but also the extras like spending a year, a semester or even a summer in a foreign country. At a time when it seems as if every American college and university has a study abroad program or has agreements with institutions that offer the experience, one has to wonder: Is it worth it?

An expert panel to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has proposed bolstering support for Japanese-language education in ASEAN countries by increasing the number of teachers, as more people in the region are learning Japanese. The proposal, submitted to Abe on Monday, calls for boosting the dispatch of Japanese-language teachers by utilizing university and graduate students, as well as seniors, to work for up to one year in member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.

When India decided it wanted to form its own Model United Nations conference – just like the one in New York – the U.S. State Department wanted to help. But the department required a little help too and called upon Alma College for assistance. The choice of Alma College was something of a no brainer.

Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides yesterday said ties between Cyprus and Israel should not be limited to energy or security but should also embrace cultural diplomacy. Kasoulides was speaking at the signing of a cooperation agreement between the University of Cyprus and the Israeli Embassy in Nicosia for the creation of a Jewish Studies programme at the University of Cyprus (UCY).

A collaboration between USC Annenberg, the David and Dana Dornsife College and Price School of Public Policy sent a group of USC students to study shifting political, social and economic landscapes in Cuba for the second consecutive summer. Under the direction of Journalism Professor Roberto Suro and USC Dornsife Professor Pamela Starr, 25 students from an array of disciplines — public relations, public diplomacy, specialized journalism, strategic communications and international relations — spent one month immersed in research and investigation of all things Cuba.

Forty teenage girls from the Middle East are visiting P.E.I. as part of a special language and cultural exchange program. It's a partnership between UPEI, the International Language Institute, and the Abu Dhabi Education Council. The 16- and 17-year-old girls are from the United Arab Emirates, and are living in residence at UPEI. Serena Lambert, academic advisor for the International Language Institute, said the program is highly competitive.

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