Internationalisation of higher education in Africa | 2012 EAIE Spring Forum

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James Jowi looks at what internationalisation means for Africa, calling on African higher …

James Jowi looks at what internationalisation means for Africa, calling on African higher
education institutions to acknowledge internationalisation as a central part of their activities, however daunting it may seem. www.eaie.org/forum

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  • 1. Discussing international education Where is students’ mental health going?Africa: a new dawn of internationalisation Life cycle of international offices International alumni matter Spring 2012
  • 2. forum This issue 03 Spring issue highlights11“Universities need to develop a holistic view of students.”Where is students’ mental health going?20“Internationalisation is a reality that Africa has to deal with.”James Jowi from the african networkfor internationalisation of education29“Successful and loyal alumni represent a community that is just too influential to ignore.”International alumni matter32“International office? What international office?” Leonard Engel, eaie executive director
  • 3. 04 forum This issueContentsEAIE updates SPOTLIGHTs FEATURESNews from the Association Regularly occurring themes Investigating hot topics02 Editorial 11 Student mental health 20 Africa: a new dawn of 32 Lifecycle of A growing concern for internationalisation international offices06 message from the universities Rising up to the challenge To centralise or decentralise president international efforts? A season of change 14 Internationalisation: a 26 International weeks: the luxury or an key to success 36 Why it’s probably not07 eaie academy review opportunity? Top tips and an exemplary worth going to Breaking new ground  Mexican mobility in focus case study university any more Rousing views on the future10 Channelling knowledge 16 Professor Dzulkifli 29 International alumni of higher education The SAFSA Mentorship Abdul Razak matter Programme An interview Finding a way to connect39 Calendar 22 Irish higher education Lighting the fires of creativity 38 Talking head An interview with Pam FredmanPublished by AdvertisingEuropean Association for International Education Contact geraghty@eaie.org for more information.PO Box 11189, 1001 GD Amsterdam, the Netherlands The EAIE welcomes requests for advertising space fromtel +31-20-344 51 00, fax +31-20-344 51 19 companies and organisations whose aims and values aree-mail info@eaie.org, www.eaie.org compatible with those of the Association and its mem- bers. Acceptance of advertising does not imply endorse-Editor Michael Cooper ment by the EAIE.Publications Committee Michael Cooper (Chair), Printed by Drukkerij Raddraaier, AmsterdamLinda Johnson, Laura Howard, Timo Ahonen, FrankWittmann, Laura Ripoll Copyright © 2012 by the EAIE All rights reserved. Extracts from Forum may be re-Marketing & Communications Manager Elise Kuurstra produced with permission of the Editor. Unless statedGraphic Designer Nhu Nguyen otherwise, opinions expressed by contributors do notPublications Coordinator Sarah Fencott necessarily reflect the position of the EAIE.e-mail publications@eaie.orgCover photography Michele Cozzolino (shutterstock) ISSN 1389-0808
  • 4. 20 forum featureAfrica:A new dawn of internationalisationJames Jowi looks at I n the past few years, internationalisa- Important to the very few Africans in that tion has gained much currency and is forum was Leymah’s convincing challengewhat internationalisa- impacting the activities of universi- to universities on their global responsibili-tion means for Africa, ties globally. The overwhelming forces of globalisation have played a part in driving ties, which, if accepted, could make the world a much better place to live in. Hercalling on African higher this development. Though Africa has been main call was for Western universitieseducation institutions influenced by global forces for many years, its higher education system is now caught to collaborate fairly with their African counterparts. She pictorially narrated theto acknowledge interna- by the increasingly complex realities posed challenges facing the higher educationtionalisation as a central by internationalisation and globalisation. sector in Africa and the transformations that partnerships were already creating. Ipart of their activities, “Pray the Devil back to hell!” These were celebrated her as a champion of fair inter-however daunting it some of the opening words by Leymah Gbowee in her keynote speech during the nationalisation.may seem. 2010 EAIE Conference in Nantes, France. Rising to the challenge This was the powerful voice of an enigmatic In one of the sessions during the 2011 African woman who, one year later, received EAIE Conference in Copenhagen, Philip the prestigious Nobel Peace prize and thus Altbach, Professor at the Centre for added more honour to a continent always put International Higher Education, Boston at the footnote of world happenings. College, US, expressed his worries about the future of higher education in Africa compared to the transformations in other Debates on internationalisation have parts of the world. He enumerated the begun to pick up on the continent many challenges facing the continent.
  • 5. forum feature 21 years, debates on internationalisation have mandate is to advance research, professional begun to pick up on the continent, seeking development, information sharing, and to address the realities of this inestimable advocacy on internationalisation of higher phenomenon. African universities are now education in Africa, is providing a new starting to recognise the importance of in- platform for engagement with internation- ternationalisation, a phenomenon that in a alisation in Africa. In its third conference real sense has been part of the system since held in Abuja, Nigeria in 2011, ANIE its inception. To a large extent, interna- brought together African university leaders tionalisation in Africa has been externally and policy makers to discuss new policy driven and now requires that Africa decides directions for internationalisation in Africa. on its agenda for internationalisation and The priority areas they identified were the strategies to pursue it. This approach for African universities to work together could enable African universities to develop with development partners to strengthen strategic responses to the risks and chal- their institutional capacities for research, lenges of internationalisation and, in es- enhance utilisation of ICT for teaching and sence, maximise the opportunities. learning, and to develop the next genera- tion of African scholars. Internal internationalisation In addition to institutional initiatives, Afri- It has been touted that the 21st century can governments and regional organisations belongs to Africa. This now seems elusive, are now taking deliberate steps to revitalise however, in different aspects, Africa is ris- the higher education sector and develop ing. After decades of slow growth, Africa structures that would foster internationali- has the chance to continue rising. Africa Photo: Lisa Thornberg (istock) sation within the continent. Africa’s start- has historically faced many odds and still ing point would be to strengthen university continues to face quite a myriad of them, collaborations within the continent to con- which have implications on how it stepsSomething needed to be done. Conse- solidate their areas of strength and develop into the future. Higher education presentsquently, during the Copenhagen confer- a viable higher education and research area one of the opportunities for continuedence, the EAIE Board had very successful which they can then use to engage with the growth. Internationalisation both withindiscussions with representatives of higher rest of the world. With this strategy, Africa Africa and between Africa and other partseducation organisations in developing can change its position as a bystander and of the world also becomes key in this.countries including the Association of Af-rican Universities (AAU) and the African Positive outcomes will be realised when AfricanNetwork for Internationalisation of Educa- universities acknowledge internationalisationtion (ANIE), which I represented. This ledto further constructive discussions betweenANIE and the EAIE on how to support become a real player in the global know- While there are ongoing debates on thethe developments of internationalisation in ledge society. It is already becoming evident potential of internationalisation in Africa,Africa. that through regional protocols and frame- noting its challenges, risks and opportuni- works, especially within the SADC region ties for the continent, it has now dawnedAfrica needs to take charge and within the East African Community, that internationalisation is a reality thatWhile internationalisation is growing in student mobility and university cooperation Africa has to deal with. Positive outcomesimportance and becoming central to higher are beginning to take root. will be realised when African universitieseducation activities, policies and planning, acknowledge internationalisation, not as ait has created new realities for Africa. A new platform for African engagement peripheral but a central part of universityThese new realities are compounding the The decision by Africa’s higher education activities. ANIE will continue workingchallenges of increasing demand, quality sector to establish the African Network for with its African and international partnersconcerns, low capacities, governance and Internationalisation of Education (ANIE) to promote the understanding and develop-research concerns facing the comparatively in 2009 has given new breath to interna- ment of internationalisation in Africa. Theyoung and growing sector. In the past few tionalisation in Africa. ANIE, whose main terrain is daunting, but can be treaded.