Excitement builds for Humber students embarking on summer global learning opportunities.
May 16, 2019
It’s an exciting time of year for Humber students embarking on global experiential learning opportunities this summer. At the end of April many of the over 400 students who will go abroad gathered for a Pre-departure Orientation led by the International Office.
Destined for locales such as diverse as Peru, Malawi, Croatia and Vietnam (35+ countries), these students embody the very best of Humber’s internationalization efforts. They are globally focused learners who see international experience as a given for developing personally and building their future careers.
Of course, much work and preparation go into making these experiences successful.
“Experiential learning is the foundation to developing career-ready citizens. It is critical that we prepare our students to succeed in a globally interconnected and knowledge-based economy – and clear learning outcomes for pre-departure research, discussion and reflection is the start of process,” says Rebecca Fitzgerald, Associate Director, International Mobility and Partnerships.
Studying abroad, students need to be well-prepared personally, logistically and culturally. The Pre-Departure Workshop covers practical details such as health and safety in a new country and making sure students know how to take care of themselves and access help if they need it.
The workshop also focuses on developing cultural empathy and understanding. As students step out of their comfort zones and into often very unfamiliar settings, we prepare them with tools and strategies to recognize their own cultural lens and to value global perspectives.
During the workshop, students recorded their thoughts on the experience ahead. The insightful and enthusiastic responses show just how valuable these opportunities are to students and how international experience is critical in shaping their careers and lives.
From a personal development aspect, students are very eager to experience and expand their knowledge of new cultures and challenge themselves to better understand the world and their perspective of it.
“New experiences are essential to growth, and so is travelling. Learning about different cultures and lifestyles is very humbling,” says Shaifali Ghai, Paralegal Studies, who is studying in Denmark this summer.
“I am studying radio, so I will take this trip as a chance to practice my documentary, social media, and writing skills. I want to interact with people who experience a different “day-to-day” in comparison to myself. I wish to learn different perspectives and get interesting stories to share with the world,” says Evian Calderon, Broadcasting-Radio, who is completing an academic course in Vietnam this summer.
Academically and professionally, these students are sharply in tune with what these opportunities mean for their studies and careers. They are passionate about seeing their areas of study and work from an international lens, and are keen to build new skills, expand their networks and open doors to future opportunities.
“I think it’s important to have a global experience because being aware of the industry on an international level allows me to enhance my skills, but also be able to share my newly acquired knowledge back in Canada and at Humber,” says Ruth Ambrocio, a Fashion Art & Business student spending the summer in Florence, Italy.
Adds classmate Demah Al Balkhi, “It is very important because one fashion item travels the world before it reaches your closet, and with global experience I can be more efficient in the fashion business field.”
The success of these study abroad efforts is a sign that Humber’s Internationalization Strategy is really part of our community’s character and vision. Our students are able to deliberately and thoughtfully engage in these experiences, and fully embrace what it means to think, act and learn globally. We look forward to sharing more on this cohort’s experiences and learnings as they return to Humber in the autumn.