Session 6. Introduction to the University of Copenhagen and the following day's field trip
January 17 (Wednesday) 4:15 pm 〜 5:00 pm
In this session John E. Andersen presented the history, current status and future trends of the University of Copenhagen, and introduced the Øresund University that SPAM participants visited on January 18 (see Appendix 6).
The University of Copenhagen, he explained, is the largest university in Denmark, and the only Nordic university to be ranked among the top 100 universities in the world (Times Higher Education Supplement Ranking, 2005 & 2006). Founded in 1479, it was the first university in the country; its objectives are research, education, and communicating and sharing knowledge. Students complain that researchers have no time for them. Our new Rector is keen that we should enhance research. Our politicians are keener on communication and the distribution of knowledge.
In 2002, the university gained independence and an external management system for the first time in its 528 year history; in 2005 a simplified structure of management was implemented. We now have an elected board, with a chairwoman to whom the Rector refers. The set-up is now like a business.
On January 1, 2007, this classically structured university with eight (8) faculties, became even larger with the merger of The Royal Veterinary and Agricultural University and The Danish University of Pharmaceutical Sciences. The hope is to achieve a number of synergies; there is a slight fear that food and agriculture will play too large a part in the university. We are in the midst of great brainstorming, and we hope to have in place a strategic plan by the end of June.
There are now four campuses − one in the inner city, the Latin Quarter, will be closed after more than 500 years; the newest is the agricultural and veterinary science campus.
Danish universities are funded by the government according to the number of students who pass their exams, the so-called taxi-meter system.
We are within the EU framework; we hope to be much more attractive to our partners and obtain increased funding with the whole health and life sciences cluster. Europe, these days, has two agendas: the Bologna agenda, and the Lisbon agenda. The Bologna agenda has been signed by all ministers of education, in a sort of bottom-up process. We report to the European Universities Association (EUA), and in order to make the whole model comparable, we comply with ECTS (European Credit Transfer System), system of credits, a wonderful invention.
We try to promote mobility, European co-operation, and a European dimension in higher education. We encourage lifelong learning. The best example of European cooperation is the setting up of qualification frameworks so that degrees may be put together by tapping qualifications from more than one university.
How many doctoral degrees are awarded per year? PhDs and graduate students are considered employees, this is not good for the university, but good for them. It is a good thing for women having babies because of our maternity leave scheme.
For once we were helped by the EU commission. It was found that institutions of higher learning were over-regulated and under-funded. Students were encouraged to spend at least one semester abroad. Now they can take their grants with them for up to two years' study abroad, and then return to us. The funding has been internationalized. We recruit 1,500 international students, we send out 1,000, and the government hopes that many more will go abroad under the new scheme. However, we have quite tough barriers if people come with foreign degrees and want to work here; this should be changed.
"Marketization" is a new concept in Denmark. Tuition fees are paid; up to 10,000, or 13,000 for the "wet" sciences, by foreign students. Branding and recruitment of international students is also new to us. We are supposed to recruit, but we are not used to this.
There is one very distinctive trend. That is, we need to move from equal opportunities to elite programs. We specialize from day 1; general education is provided at the high school level so it is a problem especially for incoming students.
For foreign students, I believe that we are in loco parentis; we are responsible to look after their health and safety issues, accommodation, and student services. As regards language, we strive to maintain our small language.
In closing, the presenter briefly-introduced the Øresund University concept that includes 3.5 million inhabitants, 12 universities, 29 hospitals, 4 defined clusters, and 1 international airport.
Field trip to Maimö University, Sweden
January 18 (Thursday)
The participants made a half-day visit to Malmö University in Sweden by chartered bus. They crossed the border between Denmark and Sweden by going through the Øresund (Öresund in Swedish) Bridge, the 16-km long, world's longest single bridge carrying both road and railway traffic, that arches over the Øresund Strait.
At Malmö University, the participants were welcomed by the students with a Malmö University bag containing a set of university materials.
Professor Lennart Olausson, vice-chancellor/president, welcomed the SPAM participants, that was followed by four brief presentations and Q&A. The presentation topics are shown below:
(1) Presentation on the multidisciplinary approaches and programs offered by the School of International Migration and Ethnic Relations (IMER) by Dr. Anders S. Wigerfelt, Dean
(2) Presentation on internationalisation at Maimö University by Mr. Knut Bergknut, Director of International Affairs
(3) Presentation on the Öresund University* by Mr. Bjarke Lembrecht Frandsen, Executive Advisor at the Öresund University
(4) Presentation of the Malmö University Library by Mrs. Jette Guldborg Petersen, Head Librarian
After these presentations, the participants were guided to the Malmö University Library, and had a tour in the facility in small groups each guided by a Malmö University student.
A transnational consortium of 14 universities − 4 in the southern part of Sweden and 10 in the eastern part of Denmark. The 14 universities have a total of about 150,000 students and 14,000 researchers. Oresund University also functions as a member of an alliance called Oresund Science Region, and collaborates with regional authorities and companies in the following research and innovation platforms: Medico/Biotech, IT, Food Science and Environmental Science. Within the framework of these platforms researchers, companies and public sector work together to create competitive competence centers based on the four targeted scientific areas, optimal conditions for a positive regional growth spiral, and new exciting jobs with companies and universities in the region. The vision is to develop the Oresund Region into one of Europe's most attractive knowledge-based growth centers. For further information, please visit: www.oresundscienceregion.org.
Session 7. Globalization of Higher Education: Implications for the SYLFF Network
January 19 (Friday) 9:40 am - 12:30 pm
The convenors, Tim Sullivan and Jerry Sheehan, thanked the University of Copenhagen for hosting the meeting, extended appreciation to the SYLFF family for organizing the biennial meeting, and the participants who submitted completed questionnaire forms.
Tim Sullivan noted that globalization has different meanings for different people, either positive or negative; young people view globalization as providing invaluable opportunities.
Jerry Sheehan commented that the session's goal is to give the Scholarship Division a sense of our thinking as a group and community, including differences of opinion. They called upon the presenters to be brief and the audience to actively participate in discussion.
Cluster #1 North/South America 9:50 am 〜 10:45 am
: (see Appendix 7-1) This presentation began with definitions of globalization and internationalization, both adopted from the world of economics, and then went on to apply these terms to education, including an examination of an internationalized curricula that can be applied to all disciplines. The presenter then went on to discuss the goals of internationalization, that is, to produce graduates who are multi-culturally competent, able to work in diverse settings, and knowledgeable of the global community, which he noted were similar to the goals of the SYLFF Program.
The presentation continued with a review of a 2003 survey on internationalization (International Association of Universities), benefits of student mobility, SYLFF philosophy, FMP, Bologna process and North America, and internationalization in the Canadian context, before turning to the implications for the SYLFF network. He concluded that the goals of the SYLFF Program are completely aligned with the goals of globalization and internationalization of higher education; the SYLFF network should continue to seek avenues to support student exchanges between different countries (through follow-up programs such as the FMP and JIP); and the SYLFF Program was 20 years ahead of most institutions of higher learning.
: (refer to Appendix 7-2) The presenter began with comments regarding his institution, Howard University, which he explained is a historically black university where most students are oriented toward Africa. He commented that it is thus important that the university and its students look beyond Africa and widen their perspectives.
Today's graduate students acquire global and interdisciplinary perspectives. Many topics today, such as global warming, he noted, are only understood from a global perspective. Students must be prepared for "living in the world", must understand different laws, etc. to be competitive, and thus may necessitate new curricula and programs. Graduate students should interact with diverse faculty and students, to acquire respect for intellect regardless of source. Howard University has become a better institution because of international contact.
Beyond curricula reform and certificate programs on global topics, he noted that global perspectives can be achieved in many ways − student exchanges/study abroad programs, faculty exchanges/joint research initiatives, and dual, "sandwich" and joint degree programs with other institutions. He then cited specific ways in which the SYLFF Program has provided opportunities for globalization, such as the joint development of a common course on race and equality with the University of Sao Paulo. The presenter also shared other SYLFF-related outcomes, for example, the Joint U.S./Africa Graduate Programs initiative which was co-developed with the University of Nairobi.
He also referred to the challenges of exchange programs, particularly for graduate students, and to the heavy responsibilities of participating faculty members before concluding that "the world is flat" − it takes a global academic village to educate a student.
: (see Appendix 7-3) This presentation focused on quality assurance and credit transfer-related issues. Using her country (Chile) and institution (University of Chile), she explained that the number of universities (from 8 in 1981 to 60 in 2007) and graduates (high unemployment) has grown. Like other countries in Latin America, the academic quality of institutions varies. Chile, she explained, has kept track of developments in Europe, such as the ECTS-Tuning Project, and tried to applied lessons learned in Europe to Chile and Latin America.
Students, she noted, are generally reluctant to study abroad, even in neighboring countries, but she was hopeful that the University of Chile will cooperate more with other institutions in the SYLFF network.
Q: (Jerry Sheehan) What is the implication of globalization for the SYLFF network? Bringing people together does not always lead to greater understanding. − quite the reverse. At my own institution we have tried to bring together students for discussion, and we have had to work on getting them to communicate with each other. How do we bring together our students, to further their ability to become future leaders?
A; (Gary Jarvis) Exchanges at least help students to become aware of other countries, to acquire different perceptions and greater sensitivity. Politics may not change, but one's sensitivity and perceptions will.
A: (Orlando Taylor) If we still have leaders all over the world who do not understand other countries − we have that in the US today − we also have the issue of self-identity; students see themselves as the center of the universe − this may also be changed.
Q: (Caroline Yang) In the Fulbright Program, the greatest barriers were faculty. Going abroad to teach was not considered as valuable as going for research. Students felt they should not "waste time" going abroad but to complete their degrees. Has this changed?
A: (Orlando Taylor) I believe that we, quite frankly, still have some of these problems. Many mentors see graduate students as part of themselves, and do not want to lose them. The bright spot is the junior faculty; they are much more open to things around us today. As we cultivate interdisciplinary programs, we will see an opening up.
A: (Ahmad Majdoubeh) This is one of the issues I really care about. Cultural understanding is very difficult. We cannot expect a student to understand another culture after a stay of 4 months. I was myself in the U.S. for 4 years and only began to understand very late; some of my colleagues went too and did not understand the culture at all. Sometimes I would discuss with students and colleagues, and we would not agree at all. Ultimately, experiences from my stay were very important.
Secondly, I would like to mention the inequality among SYLFF institutions, and other institutions all over the world. Inequality exists on several levels, including financial level. University of Jordan's major source of income is student fees. We are now trying to find funds for student exchange. What can we do about the existing inequalities?
A: (Leo Garcia) I would like to make a radical comment from an Asian point of view. You seem to define globalization as the flow of ideas. There is a hesitation to deal with ethics, politics and religion, i.e. questions on justice, peace and faith. When we talk about multiculturalism, etc., it seems that there is only one rationality, but we should see that there are multi-rationalities. Differences must not be erased; it would be nice for SYLFF to be a unity respecting differences.
Q: (Daniel Warner) Reference was made to the difference in graduates students' interest in going abroad. Could we hear more on the difference in attitude between graduates and undergraduates?
A: (Orlando Taylor) Graduate/undergraduate differences have not really been considered in the U.S. We need to see graduate students not as cheap labor for research programs (some professors not wanting to lose them, that is, going abroad for their own projects). We need to discuss the need to expand the horizons of our students, without compromising their career goals. It has to be remembered that students pay for their tuition; if you take an extra year, you have to pay for that extra year.
A: (Gary Jarvis) It does indeed take a long time to appreciate another culture, I agree with my colleague from Jordan. You do go through difficulties; still, this is not to say that it is not worth going for four months. To my colleague from Manila, I do think that SYLFF is very sensitive. (Leo Garcia: I did not say that.) In reference to the graduate/undergraduate issue, in Canada, social science students do not work independently. Graduate students are sometimes considered a nuisance because they take time from professors' own research.
A: (Teresa Iriarte) About the financial problems for students participating in student mobility programs, we have the same problems that you have. We receive a large number of students, and exchange students do not pay. Other students come privately and pay, and we try to spend this money for our own students to go abroad. We do not want to offer the possibility to go abroad only to those who can afford it; other universities do it differently, allowing those who can pay to go.