The scale and scope of international activities available in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies (LA&PS) has increased substantially in recent years, affording both students and faculty the opportunity to study and work abroad, collaborate on research with a global reach and pilot innovative international initiatives.
Over the next 10 days, LA&PS Dean Martin Singer and other University officials will be in Beijing and Hong Kong to further strengthen the global experience at York. The trip (the third of its kind since 2010) is part of ongoing efforts in the Faculty to expand international academic partnerships, increase international enrolment and reach out to alumni.
Since 2008-09, the number of international undergraduate students in LA&PS has increased by more than 80 per cent. International students from 106 countries now represent 10 per cent of the total number of undergraduates in the Faculty, with close to 50 per cent of these students coming from China.
Last year, almost 200 LA&PS students received support from the Faculty to study abroad through YorkU Abroad courses, exchanges, internships and experiential learning opportunities. That number is expected to increase by approximately 15 per cent this year.
In June, York anthropology students travelled to Athens, Greece, on a four-week research trip as part of the YorkU Abroad course ANTH 3110 Acquiring Research Skills
“We live in an increasingly borderless world,” said Singer. “By providing opportunities to study abroad and learn from international scholars, and through our increasingly international student body, we are helping our students to become engaged global citizens who will make a difference in the world.”
Singer is being accompanied on the trip by Marilyn Lambert-Drache, associate vice-president international, Marie Larose, director of recruitment and awards, and vice-president advancement Jeff O’Hagan.
The delegation will visit partner universities to strengthen existing agreements, including Beihang University and the Hong Kong University of Science & Technology, and will visit other institutions to explore opportunities for exchange and collaboration, including the University of International Business and Economics in Beijing and Hong Kong Baptist University. They will also make presentations to high schools in both cities and attend the Beijing Education Expo.
Small alumni events are being held in both Beijing and Hong Kong, including a reunion with 10 students from Beihang University who studied at York in the summer. These events will provide the York team with the opportunity to connect with some of the more than 150 alumni in Beijing and 1,700 alumni in Hong Kong.
At the conclusion of the trip, Singer will travel to India as part of a larger York University delegation.