HBA Exchange Fair showcases international learning experiences
- Nov 23, 2022
In today’s globalized world, having international experience is increasingly becoming not just an asset, but a must. Employers today are recognizing how such experiences expand people’s perspectives and help them to problem-solve and adapt to changing situations, which is more important than ever in a complex and interconnected world. One of the goals of Ivey’s strategy, Ivey Next, is to develop the mindset of global citizenship in the community and increase the School’s international scope and diversity, and international exchanges are important to achieving that goal.
For International Week 2022, HBA students had a chance to learn about the different universities and countries that are part of the HBA Exchange Program and to hear about the experiences of students who have studied abroad. It was all part of the HBA Exchange Fair on November 23 organized by HBA Program Services.
Armed with a passport book, HBA1 students as well as dual-degree students who are graduating in 2024 or 2025 had a chance to visit the booths of Ivey’s 45 international exchange partner schools to learn about the opportunities to study abroad. Ivey students are able to study abroad on exchange in HBA2 during the spring semester.
Firsthand insights on studying abroad
In addition, 70 students from the partner schools who are currently at Ivey on exchange were on hand to share details about their schools, countries, and their own international study experiences. In total, more than 25 countries were represented, including some new exchange partners from Japan, Korea, and Thailand.
“It’s a unique opportunity for HBA students to ask questions and speak with other students who are currently studying abroad, rather than just learning from fact sheets or marketing materials,” said Solomon Galindo, Ivey’s HBA Exchange and International Learning Coordinator. “It showcases all of the amazing opportunities that the students might not be aware of.”
Ivey students who were deemed a good match for a partner school were given a sticker for their passport book for a chance to win prizes.
Galindo said he hopes the experience helped the students to learn about people and places that they were not previously familiar with and opened their minds to all possibilities.
“Most students tend to go with what they already know, but you should want to immerse yourself in something that’s completely different because that’s when you learn and grow and open your mind to innovation,” he said.
And although HBA students interested in studying abroad will create a preference list of schools, Galindo said they won’t always get their first choice so it’s important to keep an open mind because any international experience is valuable.
What you learn on exchange – the people you meet and the networks you build – is nearly impossible to replicate post-graduation. It sets you up for success, not just in your career, but for life.”
– Solomon Galindo
More options to apply for an international exchange
Hoping to increase accessibility to international exchanges, Galindo said the HBA program is now offering two separate application periods for students to apply. Previously, students could only apply once, approximately one year in advance of the exchange period, and could withdraw anytime if their circumstances changed. Offering a second period for applications, six months prior to exchange, will allow more students the opportunity to participate with a longer runway to consider their options and come to a decision. Having Ivey students go on exchange is beneficial in developing global citizens and, in return, Ivey receives incoming exchange students from its partners overseas, which enhances the international collaborative learning in the classroom.
“Not only are we sending students abroad to learn and develop their global citizenship skills, but by also receiving students from our partner schools to study in HBA2, we are expanding the opportunities for students to work on international teams without having to go abroad,” said Galindo. “If we want to increase the diversity of the students that we have here at Ivey, we need to have more students participate in our global exchange program to maintain that balance with our partners.”
Galindo said the HBA program is also working on plans to add more international learning opportunities such as a summer exchange or even shorter-term exchanges.