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Students benefit from UC joining global academic consortium

Canterbury students to benefit from UC joining global academic consortium

May 7, 2014

University of Canterbury students will directly benefit by the university being the first in New Zealand to be admitted to the prestigious international AC21 Academic Consortium.

Through AC21, University of Canterbury students will have opportunities to participate in World Student Forums, international student exchanges, community learning programmes which are run in a variety of locations in emerging and developed economies and research opportunities linking with students across the globe.

The consortium comprises 20 of the world’s leading universities in Asia, North America, Europe, Africa and Australasia.

The group includes some of the oldest universities including the University of Freiburg (Germany, 1457), University of Strasbourg (1621), Chemnitz University of Technology (Germany, 1836), Stellenbosch University (South Africa, 1866), Peking University (China, 1898), Nagoya University (Japan, 1871) and now the University of Canterbury (1873). The consortium members are committed to innovation in education, research and academic governance through collaborative action.

Professor Yoshihito Watanabe, the executive director of the AC21 secretariat, took great pleasure welcoming the University of Canterbury to the consortium.

``Since its establishment in 2002, AC21 has accomplished significant achievements in promoting collaboration in education, research, and partnerships not only among members but with industry and local communities,’’ he says.

The University of Canterbury was proposed as a member by the University of Adelaide, the only other Australasian member of the consortium.

Canterbury is implementing a graduate profile that will ensure students have a package of opportunities that are not collectively offered in any other New Zealand institution, Deputy Vice-Chancellor Academic and International Dr Hamish Cochrane says.

``The package is based on the principles of work-based learning, cultural competence and confidence, community service learning, internationalisation and excellent teaching and our international partnerships, including more than 150 university partners.

``The university prides itself on having a world-class learning environment that encourages the participation and educational success of all students in all areas of study, providing them with the skills to fully contribute to the social and economic wellbeing of their communities.

``We also want all our graduates to be culturally competent and globally aware citizens who have the ability to be leaders in their fields of endeavour,’’ Dr Cochrane says.

The AC21 members are also committed to undertaking projects involving collaboration between industry, academia and government. Drawing on the wider pool of international expertise of the members is expected to provide more effective results than could be achieved through the efforts of individual members.


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