The University of Western Australia has committed to a new international initiative which will double the number of American students studying abroad by the end of the decade. UWA will join the Institute of International Education's ‘Generation Study Abroad' initiative by pledging to host at least double the current number of US study abroad students at UWA by the end of 2019.
Pro Vice-Chancellor (International) Iain Watt said the US was the most popular destination of choice for UWA students.
"The more students we accept from the US the more UWA students we can then send to the US through bilateral partnerships," Mr Watt said.
"It's a win-win situation. We are also open to other forms of partnership and very keen to develop innovative study abroad opportunities for US students and warmly welcome proposals from new partners in both countries."
The University would work towards increasing capacity with a goal of establishing 10 new partnerships aimed at receiving 400 students per year, Mr Watt said.
"We will improve access by offering scholarships of up to $80,000 in 2015 to support new and existing partnerships, launch a new fee model to support students from new (non-bilateral) partners, recognise US study abroad students as formal alumni of the University, and support US Faculty and Study Abroad professionals with new ways to improve curricular integration," he said.
"At UWA, we emphasise the importance of global awareness and believe that a study abroad experience enhances a student's global outlook and overall education. This year we welcomed more than 722 study abroad and exchange students from 25 countries including more than 100 students from US partner universities, and organisations such as the Butler University Institute for Study Abroad and The Education Network.
"We would very much like to increase our US cohort. UWA students who participate in study abroad travel to 24 countries each year including the US where we have more than 25 partnerships."
UWA is one of only five Australian universities and 52 international institutions participating in this initiative. More than 150 higher education institutions from 41 US states have already signed the Generation Study Abroad Commitment. Building on its nearly 100-year commitment to study abroad, the Institute of International Education (IIE) has committed $2 million to the initiative over the next five years.
Milly Ingate (UWA International Centre) (+61 8) 6488 3537
David Stacey (UWA Media Manager) (+61 8) 6488 3229 / (+61 4) 32 637 716