U.S. Universities Opening Programs, Campuses Abroad for International Students

Posted By Eliana Osborn on March 15, 2016 at 11:41 am
U.S. Universities Opening Programs, Campuses Abroad for International Students
University of Arizona will offer a law B.A. in China

International students flock to American universities to study, but there are limits on how many visas are available. This is why schools like New York University, Columbia University, and the University of Arizona are taking their operations overseas to reach a wider audience. But, such diversification has benefits and risks—financial and otherwise—that are substantial.

University of Arizona to offer law B.A. in China

The University of Arizona won’t be building a full campus in China, but they are offering a bachelor’s degree fully available in China. In a partnership with Ocean University of China, students will be able to earn a dual degree. This is the first program of its kind—a big step for global legal issues. The BA in law will be the same for students in China as those who earn it in Tucson at the main UA campus. At the same time, pupils will also earn an LLB degree.

The UA-OUC program started small with just 77 students in 2015 but is expected to grow to 400 participants. Global education partnerships are a growth opportunity for American colleges, with millions of students eager for a chance to learn. There’s even a possibility for some Chinese students to complete part of their coursework in Arizona.

NYU to open 11 international campuses

NYU also got behind the idea of a global campus with ambitious plans for eleven campuses. Shanghai and Abu Dhabi were the first spots to get attention, with full degree offerings in liberal arts. The 2013 plan was for hiring 300 new faculty to be on the ground at the new locations. Some of the massive costs for such expansion have come from local governments anxious to bring a top-named American school to their locations.

Inside Higher Education reports that not everyone is thrilled about NYU’s vision. There’s been “increasing criticism from faculty, driven by renewed questions about academic freedom (or lack thereof) in Abu Dhabi and, to a lesser degree, Shanghai; frustrations about the detraction of attention from core academic programs in New York; and concerns about a lack of faculty input in decision-making. Some faculty described NYU as a corporate-style university, overextended and in search of new real estate and revenue sources.”

Columbia University’s 8 global centers

It comes down to what schools believe to be their mission. If part of that is participating in the global economy and staying relevant, expansion overseas may well be a part. But, there’s a world of difference between small pilot programs and full-fledged campus creation.

Columbia University has found a middle road between these two options. They created eight global centers serving as outposts for integrated learning. “Functioning as a network, the global centers encourage teaching and research that require working across disciplinary boundaries, having a presence in multiple regions, and engaging non-Columbia experts and scholars from those regions,” explains their website. A mix between study abroad, individual faculty projects, and other small scale endeavors, global centers are an exciting way to truly make college learning and teaching about more than just the United States.

Eliana Osborn
Eliana Osborn is an associate English professor at Arizona Western College, with degrees from Brigham Young University and Northern Arizona University. She’s published widely in forums such as The New York Times, the Washington Post, the Christian Science Monitor, and the Chronicle of Higher Education.

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