Aarhus boosts outbound, EMI courses drop
Business Academy Aarhus is boosting its outbound mobility program in a bid to sustain international experiences, as government regulation has resulted in a reduction of English medium instruction courses.
With an MOU signed with Heidelberg University in Tiffin, Ohio, Business Academy Aarhus reached a total of 70 university partners in January 2019, and the school is placing added importance on its Go Abroad program and summer school places overseas.
“We are also very worried about how many full-degree students we will be able to attract”
“Students need to be able to experience other cultures and learning styles, something which can be achieved by taking an entire semester abroad or a shorter summer school program,” said Mads Hedelund, head of Career and Internationalisation.
“As we are obliged (by political considerations) to reduce the number of English-language programs, we are delighted that our Go Abroad opportunities are growing,” he added.
Since 2015, EMI study places have decreased by 25% in the country, affecting all Danish higher education institutions, according to Sharon Wilkins, international project manager at Business Academy Aarhus.
The reduction of EMI courses was largely seen as a bid to discourage international graduates from returning home to work after their studies. All incoming exchange only take English-language program at Business Academy Aarhus.
Up until now, the school has not seen a drop in numbers, but 2019 marks the first time it can only offer 10 EMI programs.
“I am a little worried about how many incoming exchange we will get. We are also very worried about how many full-degree students we will be able to attract,” Wilkins noted.
“Since 2015, we have gone from 900 international students to 700 international students. Outbound experiences, especially summer schools, have become more important to promote internationalisation.”
Many Danish SME companies that the school collaborates with often want graduates with an international mindset, Wilkins added, but government policy doesn’t necessarily foster those opportunities.
“They removed all quotas for sending students abroad and this is no longer a strategic goal, this obviously means that the individual program heads do not have internationalisation as top-of-mind. Summer schools are becoming more and more popular and obviously, we, at International Office, are promoting summer schools as a viable international experience,” she explained.
“In general, we have made Canada a hot spot so have really intensified our exchange agreements there and obviously all the Erasmus programmes are popular.”