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In Spring 2021 Bucknell University was selected to participate in the prestigious American Council on Education’s “Internationalization Lab” as a member of cohort #19. For the next two years a team of staff, faculty and students, led by Professor John Hunter, Professor Donna Ebenstein, and Stephen Appiah-Padi worked to gather information from across the university to produce as thorough a picture as possible of the state of internationalization at the institution.

Find the Self-study here.

What we found was that our community is unified in its desire to foster a vibrant international community and enhance our already existing efforts in internationalization. We all recognize the high-impact internationalization activities that are happening across the university. What our report showed was what we need to focus on now: we need to make internationalization part of Bucknell’s public and internal identity; internationalization needs to permeate the institution; and we need to make sure that all our efforts that are happening in student affairs, in the curriculum of all three colleges, in recruitment and retention are better coordinated and work in tandem.

Our Goals

  • We need to make internationalization efforts strategic, coordinated, resourced, and visible!
    • What does that mean? Although there is a lot going on in terms of internationalization, we need to increase the visibility and accessibility of our global activities, opportunities, and resources through public facing web presence (like this one!)
    • With the right leadership, we need to ensure that the needs of international students, faculty and staff remain in the center of our work. And to do this, we need to leverage existing resources at the university to further our work.
  • We need to ensure that every student has curricular and co-curricular opportunities for meaningful global cultural learning experiences
    • One way to do this is to incorporate International Virtual Exchange into components of learning across the university. What is IVE? Check out our page here!
    • We need to make sure that the barriers to study abroad are removed, whether they are financial, academic, or social.
    • We need to encourage and support more international student exchanges.
    • We need to offer a greater variety of global learning opportunities to Bucknell students; through enhancing global cultural content and pedagogy in our courses; through the prioritization of student intercultural competencies and humility before, during and after study abroad; and we need to strengthen our advising of students about the importance of foreign language study, global learning opportunities, and the development of intercultural literacies.
  • We need to make the Bucknell campus more welcoming and inclusive to its international community
    • This means aligning internationalization with work on inclusion and belinging
    • We need to improve on-campus support for international students, staff and faculty and adequately resource the offices that support this international community
    • We need to provide a dedicated space for international students and develop, support and promote opportunities for the social integration of international and domestic students.
    • We also need to plan international student recruitment and admissions strategically
    • and finally, we need to put policies in place that demonstrate that Bucknell values the recruitment of international faculty and staff.
International Coffee Hour, November 2023. Sponsored by the Language Council and Bucknell Beyond Borders