Living Change: Education Abroad in 21st Century Europe
3rd European Conference
College Year in Athens (CYA), Athens, Greece
October 5-7, 2016
Europe is ever-evolving, redefining itself as a community of nations, as a shared economic entity, as a source of common cultural capital. Contemporary Europe is facing enormous pressures of social, political and financial crises, to an extent not witnessed since World War II. U.S. students confronting this moment in European history are living through a time of change and transformation.
The theme of The Forum on Education Abroad’s 3rd European conference explored how U.S. education abroad defines Europe, and how European education abroad partners define Europe to visiting U.S. students, so that students may appreciate the past, understand the present and anticipate the future of the most popular education abroad destination.
How do present-day European realities influence U.S. education abroad? How do U.S. students perceive present-day Europe? How do their European education abroad experiences deconstruct their expectations? How can international educators encourage students to develop a better understanding of present-day Europe?
How can international educators express a shared culture that is at once the foundation of accumulated history and cultural knowledge and at the same time changes as each nation responds to current issues?
The conference addressed the interests of education abroad administrators and faculty who work and teach in Europe, as well as colleagues from the U.S. who work with European programs and universities. The common goal of the conference was to share ideas for model practices for U.S. education abroad in Europe in light of the conference theme, including program design and curriculum, teaching, and a wide range of issues and topics.
“Education as the Connecting Virtue Between Nations and People,” featuring Anna Diamantopoulou, President of DIKTIO- Network for Reform in Greece and Europe.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6 | 8:45-10 A.M.
Ethics of Mobility and the Mobility of Ethics: Value-Based Challenges in Education Abroad
Ben Levy (Ramapo College of New Jersey); Susan McGury (DePaul University); David Shallenberger (International Honors Program/World Learning)
International encounters inevitably involve ethical questions and quandaries around such issues as academic standards, pedagogical differences, professor-student relationships, professional practices and more. Different cultures bring differing understandings of what is right, wrong, appropriate, or feasible, and these discrepancies need to be considered fully and fairly.
From Expectation to Reality: How Pre-Departure Messaging Can Encourage Deeper Student Engagement
Kari Beall (Michigan State University); Heather Funk Theodoridi (American College of Thessaloniki); Dan Meier (Michigan State University); Margit Pestalits (Corvinus University of Budapest)
Case study presentations from both European and U.S. perspectives, combined with small group work, will allow us to explore issues surrounding the need for a more accurate portrayal of present day Europe. More intentional marketing, programming, and communication will lead to a stronger foundation for a more engaged study abroad student body.
How Can We Embrace All of Europe, and Provide a Truly Global Cultural Environment in One Study Abroad Location?
Anjouli Janzon (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid); Irene Martin (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)
The Study Abroad program at the Universidad Autónoma de Madrid aims to provide a learning environment that encourages a better understanding of present-day Europe. This study pays special attention to how U.S. students perceive Europe and how this perception is altered over time due to the influence of views expressed by fellow European, Asian and Spanish students.
Universities, Cultures, and Communication: Identifying the Cross-Cultural Dimensions of Inter-Institutional Dialog as a Way to Improve Collaboration
Timothy Carlson (IFE- French Field Study and Internship Programs); Anne-Marie Michel, (The Université Catholique de Lille); Thomas Roman (IFE – French Field Study and Internship Programs); Catherine Winnie (Southern Methodist University)
Europe’s universities are as complex, fertile and changing as the civilization whence they spring. Improving trans-Atlantic dialog between higher-learning institutions will increase student access to the European adventure. Better ties mean each side listening to the other’s needs, constraints, goals, and expressing their own. Above all, the dialog must be recognized as a cross-cultural exercise.
Supporting Students Who Report Sexual Misconduct While Abroad: Discussion of Guidance from the Standards Committee Working Group
Julie Anne Friend (Northwestern University); Stacey Bolton Tsantir (DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia); Mark Hayes (American University)
Recent revisions to U.S. laws create specific obligations for U.S. colleges and universities regarding the prevention, reporting, and response to sexual misconduct on campus. Although entities abroad that do not receive U.S. federal financial aid have no obligations under the law, presenters will discuss how combined efforts to comply with the spirit of the law to support survivors.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6 | 10:45 A.M.-12 P.M.
Discovering Meaning in European Cities: An Experiential and Interdisciplinary Exploration
Elizabeth Langridge (DEREE, The American College of Greece); Gregory Katsas (DEREE, The American College of Greece)
One of the challenges of education in our globalized world is to demonstrate the relevance of other experiences to one’s own perspective. This session presents Athens as an exemplar and a carrier of meaning for melding theoretical and experiential pedagogies for exploring identities within the city and includes breakout groups to explore and expand participants’ pedagogical toolkits.
The Forum’s Strategic Plan
Mary Anne Grant (President Emerita, ISEP); Enda Carroll (University College Dublin); Nick Gozik (Boston College); Rich McGourty (Consultant); Natalie A. Mello (The Forum on Education Abroad); Lorna Stern (Arcadia University, The College of Global Studies); Annmarie Whalen (The Forum on Education Abroad); Brian Whalen (The Forum on Education Abroad)
Generation Z Goes to Europe: Study Abroad Orientation in the 21st Century
Christopher Nicolussi (New York University); Martina Faltova (NYU Prague); Renee Spruit (CIEE Amsterdam); Alexandra Wood (CIEE)
Well planned pre-departure and on-site orientations are crucial for enriching study abroad experiences. Education abroad professionals from the same organization, from the U.S. and Europe, will share their expertise in online and in-person pre-departure workshops and on-site orientation schedules that include the important: policies, health, safety; and needed: culture, history, expectations, and learning goals.
Hybrid Education Abroad: Teaching Europe, American-Style
Cary Nathenson (CIEE); Ray Casserly (CIEE Global Institute London); Jana Čemusová (CIEE Prague); Katrin Völkner (Northwestern University)
“Hybrid” has a dual meaning in education: a mixing of curricula and objectives, but also a mixing of delivery methods, online and face-to-face. This session thinks about hybrid in these broad terms and asks how educators can create the necessary bridges between U.S.-style higher learning, online tools, and an authentic European study-abroad experience.
Inclusive Excellence in the Global Context
Laurie Black (School for International Training); Jim Lucas (Michigan State University)
As developed by the Association of American Colleges and Universities, Inclusive Excellence is the recognition that a community or institution’s success is dependent on how well it values, engages, and includes the rich diversity of its stakeholders. Join us to discuss the challenges of defining this term across cultures with differing norms, laws, and policies, and to provide feedback on The Forum’s effort to integrate Inclusive Excellence into the Standards of Good Practice.
Intercultural Learning from the Crisis of European Identity
Milton Bennett (Intercultural Development Research Institute); Ida Castiglioni (University of Milano Bicocca)
Students will encounter a Europe reeling from migration, asylum seeking, and threats of terrorism, generating raw emotions and conflicting arguments about what it means to be European. Some of the arguments parallel historical events in the U.S., while others point to uniquely different futures. Programs can incorporate the current European experience into a deep consideration of global citizenship.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6 | 1:45-3 P.M.
The Closing of the Study Abroad Mind
William T Hyndman III (Florida A&M University); David Puente (International Studies Abroad (ISA)); Daniel Schuval (Bar Ilan University)
Many students choose European destinations to see Europe rather than to master a particular national language and culture. Yet they do so when Europe faces existential threats: demographics, weak economies, terrorism, racism, and extremism. This panel argues that our penchant for painting a rosy portrait, and for not talking about threats to Europe’s sustainability, does students a disservice.
The Creation, Implementation, and Outcomes of a European-Based Professional Development Program for Faculty/Staff
Jennifer Engel (Loyola University); Lisa Guido (SAI Programs); Kimberly Simmons (University of South Carolina)
This session discusses a European-based overseas experience for faculty and staff that has been proven to enhance global leadership potential and build capacity for campus internationalization. Presenters outline the program’s goals and implementation process, then turn to how it resulted in greater engagement, deeper cultural awareness, and increased access to education abroad for faculty/staff.
Preparing U.S. Students for European Teaching Styles
Loren Ringer (Parsons Paris); Magda Bernaus (CIEE Barcelona Study Center); Ray Casserly (CIEE Global Institute London); Lynn Neddo (The University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill)
Most U.S. and European universities promote comparable learning outcomes for their liberal arts programs with equal success rates. However the strategies to achieve these goals remain quite different. For example, many European classrooms provide less continuous assessment or student participation. How can we better prepare our students to assimilate the differences to achieve successful outcomes?
Setting the Stage for Change: Intercultural Competence Through the Art of Improvisation
Benjamin Lorch (CIEE Global Institute Berlin); Menelaos Prokos (ImproVIBE)
This interactive and lively session demonstrates the power and practice of theatrical improvisation as an intercultural tool for students of short term, multi-site study programs. We will show how the improvisational mindset—focused on change, open to outcome—moves students’ hearts and minds to overcome fears and hesitations and jump in to play an active and enriching role in new cultures.
Why “Integration” is the Wrong Word: Solutions for Viable International Educational Collaboration
Julia Carnine (Dickinson en France; Université Fédérale Toulouse, Midi-Pyrénées); Sylvie Toux (Brown University)
U.S. study abroad wants to “integrate” students in the country and local university, assuming that the more students interact locally, learn culture, social codes, the more they benefit. These are laudable objectives yet difficult to produce. We are too familiar with student self-segregation between locals and internationals. We will outline issues obstructing international collaboration and offer solutions.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 7 | 8:45-10 A.M.
The Best Decision I’ve Ever Made: Expectations and Realities of Studying Abroad in Europe
Margaret Wiedenhoeft (Kalamazoo College); Christina Hein (Friedrich-Alexander Universitaet); Victoria Pineda (Universidad de Extremadura/Kalamazoo College)
Students on study abroad have been prompted to expect “a life changing experience” including meaningful encounters with natives of the host culture; opportunities for personal growth, and having fun. Yet what if the reality of living abroad does not match up with these expectations? At times living abroad is not fun at all. How is the student to come to terms between expectations and reality?
Do I Really Have to Speak French? Articulating and Assessing Students’ Personal and Professional Development, Cultural Exchange and the Importance of Language within the Context of Academic Internships in Europe
Jon Hutchinson (EUSA – Academic Internship Programs); Céline Garelli (SUNY Oswego); Amy Tondu (Middlebury College)
Three institutions will discuss best practices in fostering mutually beneficial exchange between U.S. students and the European host society through academic internships, mindful self-evaluation and articulation of cultural understanding. How students and supervisors can reflect on and assess integration into and impact on the host culture, and personal, academic and professional skill development.
Feeling Secure: Evolving the Dialogue
Lauren Winogron (Rutgers University); Kim Algeo (Rider University), Christina LoBrutto (Rutgers University)
Recent events have raised concerns about study abroad in Europe—the region of choice for most American students and one that has historically been perceived as safe. Changes due to immigration, as well as media coverage, are creating different concerns and questions for students, parents, and international education professionals. As the atmosphere in Europe evolves, so too must the dialogue!
Living the Change that Sustainability Demands: Lessons from Europe for Students Abroad
Scott Blair (Transnational Learning Consulting, LLC); Russ Alexander (The Education Abroad Network (TEAN)); Uttiyo Raychaudhuri (Clemson University)
Where better than Europe to teach Homo sapiens abroad the stakes of global sustainability? How can we hope to steward the planet—its fragile flora and fauna alike—if programs fail to focus young minds on the urgency of the local-global environmental nexus? European approaches to climate sustainability expose students to culturally distinct skills, attitudes and habits that can and should be assessed.
Unplugging the Generation Z Student by Plugging into Cultural Engagement
Emily Childers Brocks (DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia); Anette Høj Frederiksen (DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia); Morgan Reiss (CIEE)
How can we encourage students to engage in the European societies they are studying in and disconnect from home while abroad? The panel will share best practices and challenges met in engaging students, including how generational differences influence student expectations of cultural engagement. Encouraging students to focus on local experiences versus a European adventure will be highlighted.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 7 | 10:45 A.M.-12 P.M.
The Dark Side of Europe: Grappling with Difficult Topics While Studying Abroad
Deivida Vandzinskaite (DIS – Study Abroad in Scandinavia); Scott Carpenter (Carleton College); Amy Muse (University of St. Thomas)
This session explores education abroad’s best practices in the context of the current European migrant crisis. We invite participants to discuss various ways of engaging students in meaningful travel experiences and to reflect on the challenges and opportunities involved in helping students understand the unpleasant, dark and unglorified side of current events.
Expanding the Ethical Responsibilities of Service Learning and Volunteerism Programs: Additional Considerations for Best Practices
Aimee Placas (CYA); Susan Buck Sutton (Bryn Mawr College); Angeliki Dimitriadi (Hellenic Foundation for European & Foreign Policy (ELIAMEP)/ECFR Berlin); Nadia Meliniotis (CYA)
Expanding the ethical responsibilities of service learning and volunteerism programs: additional considerations for best practices. This panel brings together professors and managers of volunteer and service learning programs to discuss specific contemporary ethical concerns currently under-discussed in the field.
“Identities are Not Like Hats”: Helping Students Forge a Global Identity
Megan Griffin (Florida State University International Programs London); Christina Carroll (Florida State University International Programs); Francesca Manchi (European Commission Office); Ignacio Messana (Florida State University International Programs Valencia)
The historian Linda Colley described identities as ‘not being like hats.’ Colley’s work was in reference to the nations of the UK, but this panel will apply this concept to the field of study abroad. When travelling abroad, students may be reluctant to immerse themselves in the culture of their host society for fear they are rejecting their Americanness, resulting in them returning unchanged.
The New Grand Tour? Can Multi-Country Programs Offer a Value-Added Experience for our Students?
Rebecca Bergren (Gettysburg College); Dan Albertson (Gettysburg College); Carl Jubran (IAU College)
Does the “New Europe” with its open borders and mixing of cultures make single-country programs a relic of the past? Do multi-country programs uniquely offer comparative perspectives and a holistic understanding of Europe? How can a single-country program offer students a Europe-wide perspective while students remain geographically static? Come join the conversation.
Understanding the Imperative of Incident Reporting
Kerry Geffert (Terra Dotta); Ann Hubbard (AIFS Study Abroad); Natalie Mello (The Forum on Education Abroad); John Tansey (Dartmouth College)
Reporting of incidents while on study abroad continues to attract attention at both the U.S. federal and state levels. Learn about current legislation, why reporting is important, what it means for Europeans hosting U.S. students and what options exist for collecting data. The Forum’s Critical Incident Database will be discussed as an important method for the tracking and reporting of information.
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 7 | 1:45-3 P.M.
Education Abroad in 21st Century Europe: Living Change or Swimming in the Shallow End?
Melody Knutson (University of California Education Abroad Program (UCEAP)); Dorothee Mackowiak (Freie Universität Berlin International Summer and Winter University); Robert Sherratt (Université Jean Moulin Lyon III); Carole Viers-Andronico (University of California, Paris Study Center)
This session will compare three program models developed in response to changing trends in U.S. study abroad: a University of California multi-country program; Freie Universität’s international summer school; and the Université Jean Moulin Lyon III’s “immersion in English” semester program. How do these programs help students meaningfully engage with salient and topical issues in multi-cultural Europe?
Leveraging New York Times Digital Content to Enhance Co-Curricular Engagement
Sue Mills (The New York Times); David Puente (International Studies Abroad (ISA))
Given its sophisticated international perspective on a contemporary Europe whose identity is being complicated and redefined with each news cycle, Times digital content holds immense potential for helping students abroad in Europe make sense of the changing cultural, social, historical and political circumstances of the countries they visit and call home. Participants will learn how to navigate Times articles, videos, and multimedia content back to 1851, and will be made aware of how universities and program providers are partnering with the Times to enhance co/curricular learning about Europe. A number of pertinent examples will be drawn hear from ISA’s Discovery Model, an overseas co-curricular learning platform which liberally incorporates Times content. We will look at how ISA students in Europe are currently referencing Times content to anchor their reflections about cross-cultural learning (blogs, videos), as well as how ISA Resident Directors are making creative use of Learning Management software to test new delivery methods for making traditional news accessible and relevant to Gen Z students and other digital natives.
Re-Reading the City: By the Sea
Michael Woolf (CAPA The Global Education Network); Christine Anderson (University of Minnesota); Petros Babasikas (University of Patras/CYA); Anthony Gristwood (CAPA The Global Education Network); Hila Oren (The Tel Aviv Foundation)
Study in urban spaces challenges not only the perception of students but offers opportunities to redefine curriculum in crucial ways. At the end of our session, attendees are invited to go on a city walk after the reception: we will go from classroom to streets to illustrate the ways in which we can read/re-read the city.
Student Teaching in Europe: Developing Culturally Sensitive Teaching Practices
Opal Leeman Bartzis (Ball State University/IFSA-Butler); Adrian Beaulieu (Providence College)
This session presents new doctoral research on the impact of student teaching abroad and the development of culturally sensitive teaching practices. Experiential learning and transformative learning theories, undergirding the study, are examined regarding development of teacher education programs in Europe. Ideas for expanding opportunities for education majors will be collaboratively explored.
Introducing EUASA, A Pan-European Organization: How Can We Create a Barrier-Free Zone for Study Abroad in Europe?
Pia Schneider (Iowa State University of Science and Technology); Jana Čemusová (CIEE and AAUP CZ); Stephen Robinson (Champlain College); Gian Franco Borio (Association of American College and University Programs in Italy (AACUPI))
In a rapidly changing Europe, the newly created association EUASA seeks to foster a better dialogue between the various national associations and create a tool to address common problems efficiently on an European level. The intent is to contribute to breaking barriers within the Schengen area and expanding national local viewpoints to a larger, future-oriented, European-wide perspective.