Wednesday, April 1st, 2009
Increased promotional efforts paying off in Canada
University of Pennsylvania to cosign international student loans
University of Alberta aims for the top
Early bird flyer
1) LET’S GO CANADA – Increased promotional efforts paying off in Canada
According to Citizenship and Immigration’s 2008 overview, Canada saw more international students enrolling in its institutions in 2008 than it has seen in a decade. The overview does not provide a breakdown according to level of education—primary, secondary, or tertiary—but there are indications that Canadian colleges and universities played an active role in the increase in enrollments.
Pari Johnston, director of international relations at the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada, credits increased efforts on the part of individual universities and colleges for the rise in enrollment.
Carleton University in Ottawa reports stepping up recruiting last year, visiting 169 schools in 23 countries. Its international student complement increased 5 percent in 2008.
Interest is also being driven by the Canadian International Education Bureau’s new program, “Imagine Education in Canada.” Launched internationally in October by the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the branding campaign is being used by embassies in source countries like India and China.
The campaign directs potential students to a website outlining the benefits of study in Canada, including courses, part time job prospects, and the Canadian Experience Class immigration program launched last September. The program allows individuals who have completed a degree and a year of work experience in Canada to apply for permanent residence.
Immigration applicants under the Canadian Experience Class are given priority status and do not have to leave the country to apply for permanent residence.
Source: “http://www.embassymag.ca/page/view/foreign_students-2-25-2009,” Embassy, 25 February 2009.
“http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/resources/statistics/facts2008/temporary/04.asp,” Citizenship and Immigration Canada.
2) ABROAD PERSPECTIVE – University of Pennsylvania to cosign international student loans
The University of Pennsylvania’s Board of Trustees has decided to share risk with an undisclosed US bank to secure loans for international students.
Formerly, students attending Penn’s Wharton School of Business and other professional schools could access loans through Citibank, but Citibank dissolved its program in December because of liquidity problems.
The new program will allocate risk of losses up to 10 percent to the undisclosed bank; Penn will absorb the remaining.
Penn is seeking out other lenders in order to be able to extend the loan option to Wharton and its other professional schools, but because the schools’ financial structures operate independently, it will be up to each school to offer the program.
Wharton Dean Tom Robertson says that, in the end, more than one program may be required to facilitate loans to all international students. The programs will be dedicated to protecting students who began their studies under the Citibank loan system and incoming students who no longer have access to such loans.
Source: “http://thedp.com/index.php/article/2009/03/university_will_cosign_international_grad_students_loans,” The Pennsylvanian, 19 March 2009.
3) OVER THE COUNTER – University of Alberta aims for the top
University of Alberta president Dr. Indira Samarasekera believes now is the time for Canadian universities to make their mark on the international student market.
President of Canada’s third largest university since 2005, Samarasekera has been the driving force behind U of A’s renewed academic plan. She has helped the university capitalize on its oil and natural resources revenue to attract international faculty and students.
Now that the province of Alberta is at the tail-end of its oil boom, it is becoming increasingly important to compete for international students for both academic and economic reasons.
Samarasekera says that Canadian institutions have been “asleep at the switch” when it comes to international undergraduate recruiting. She is now leading U of A on an aggressive campaign to take on competitor countries like the UK and Australia to attract more students from China and India.
In order to track its progress, U of A will create its own benchmarking exercise. U of A will compare itself to US universities that share a small set of characteristics, including a medical school and an agricultural school, and then widen the source pool of universities to other countries.
Samarasekera intends to increase the proportion of international undergraduates from 6 percent to 15 percent over the next five to six years and graduates from 21 percent to 30 to 35 percent.
Source: “http://www.universityworldnews.com/article.php?story=20090326201240106,” University World News, 27 March 2009.
4) GLOBE TIPPING – Early bird flyer
Want to avoid the jams associated with delayed and cancelled flights?
Fly early in the morning.
Flights scheduled for early in the morning often do not face the same kind of issues that affect flights scheduled for later in the day. Delays due to inclement weather, technical troubles, colourful characters, and over-full flights tend to compound as the day progresses, causing later flights to be pushed back.
These days, airlines are cutting back on costs which means fewer planes in circulation. Their “equipment” flies more routes throughout the day.
So if you want sidestep delays as best you can–especially during things like holidays or storm seasons–schedule your travel for the wee hours.
Source: “http://www.independenttraveler.com/travel-tips/troubleshooting/foul-weather-travell,” Independent Traveler, 7 July 2008.