Study finds that the US study abroad sector in Ireland contributes €220M and 448 jobs to the Irish economy each year.
The INIS registration office at Burgh Quay will be closed on Monday, October 16 due to Hurricane Ophelia. They will reschedule all appointments over the next couple of weeks, including Saturdays and evenings. More details will be available from the INIS website on Tuesday, October 17th.
ASAPI executive committee members Claire McGowan and Suzi Breslin will be presenting an overview of current emergency best practice among our community at our Emergency Services Workshop. Please take 10 minutes to complete their survey so we can share a full and accurate picture of our community's commitment to student safety. Please complete it as soon as possible and no later than April 24th.
The Forum on Education Abroad, of which ASAPI is a reciprocal member, has issued a response to the executive order banning travelers from seven Muslim-majority nations. The Forum states that it "is strongly against President Trump’s actions, which run counter to the international education values that we work so hard to achieve." A running list of University and Higher Education Association responses can also be found at the International Higher Education Consulting Blog.
ASAPI received the following message from the Registration and Residence Division of the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service: "The appointment booking system is in the final stages of development and is going to be launched on Thursday, 8th of September offering appointments from the 15th of September. The existing early morning ticketing system will then end and all appointments will need to be made via the booking system."
Last week the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service held an information session on the transfer of the Dublin-based registration function from GNIB to INIS. ASAPI attended along with other Dublin 3rd level institutions. Of special note to ASAPI members:
- At present, this only applies to Dublin. Registration will - for the time being - continue to be carried out by Gardaí in other areas of the country. Immigration control at Dublin Airport will soon be wholly managed by INIS which will hopefully reduce the number of students staying less than 90 days being referred to Burgh Quay.
- The new appointment system - burghquayregistrationoffice.inis.gov.ie - will be going on line by the end of August, and possibly earlier. There will no longer be a ticketing system or any need to queue. Appointments are “released” six weeks in advance, so there will be rolling availability.
- Prices will remain the same - €300
- The office can be contacted at email@example.com
- The registration team advised marking messages URGENT for exceptional cases - e.g. student leaves the State for a bereavement and won’t be returning to the course until after stamp expiration; assistance with VIPs or visiting faculty, etc. They want to ensure that they respond appropriately to one-off cases but not necessarily create policies for them.
- If you previously arranged a group appointment with GNIB for incoming fall students, it is very likely that INIS are not aware of it. If you are expecting to bring a group of students to register, you should contact them ASAP.
- The INIS team at the meeting sounded amenable to making group appointments as long as they had sufficient (i.e. 4-6 weeks) notice. There was a philosophical discussion about the merits of keeping the new system completely focused on the individual student rather than groups, but INIS expressed a willingness to be flexible, particularly during the transitional period. They are very eager to reduce queuing and delays. At a minimum, they will be willing to give colleges/providers a “heads up” when appointments are about to be released so they can pass this information to students.
- INIS appear eager to work cooperatively with educational providers to ensure that students use the new appointment system and are well prepared for their appointments. Note that there is currently no “NCT retest” option for students who do not come prepared with all their documents - they will have to go back in to the system for a new appointment.
- The INIS are eager to expand a system trialed last year with some private colleges: replacing the college letter with a continuously updated spreadsheet from the college. This will ensure that information is up to date and reduce their considerable paperwork burden. INIS will hold a meeting later in the autumn to begin this process; ASAPI are eager to be involved with this from the earliest stages to ensure the particular needs of study abroad are built in to the system.
The Forum on Education Abroad is holding its third European conference in Athens on October 5-7, 2016. ASAPI will be represented by Co-chair Rebecca Woolf and Committee Member Stephen Robinson. ASAPI and the Forum have a reciprocal membership arrangement, so ASAPI members can avail of the discounted rate for the conference as well as pre-conference workshops. Let us know at info (at) asapireland.org if you are planning to attend!
ASAPI held its AGM on 27 January, outlining organizational accomplishments since it was founded in 2013 and setting an ambitious program for development in the next 2-4 years. A new Executive Committee was elected and the dedicated service of outgoing Co-Chair Karl Dowling was acknowledged. Congratulations to the newly elected members of the ASAPI Executive Committee. You can read more about the new members here.
The Forum is now accepting session proposals for its 3rd European Conference, Living Change: Education Abroad in 21st Century Europe. The conference will be hosted by CYA (College Year in Athens) in Athens, Greece, October 5-7, 2016. The theme of the 3rd European Conference explores how U.S. education abroad defines Europe, and how European education abroad partners define Europe to visiting U.S. students, so that students may appreciate the past, understand the present and anticipate the future of the most popular education abroad destination.
The deadline to submit proposals is January 29, 2016.
2016 Annual General MeetingWed. 27th January, 3.30 PM Champlain College Dublin 43 Leeson Street Lower, Dublin 2
2016 AGM AGENDA Executive Commitee Year in Review 2016 Goals for ASAPI Elections - must be present at the meeting to cast your vote
After the meeting we will repair to Alfie Byrnes (at the Conrad Hotel on Earslfort Terrace) to celebrate the new Executive Committee Members and a successful ASAPI 2016!
The Department of Education and Skills High Level Group on International Education met on 13 November 2016. Rebecca Woolf attended on behalf of ASAPI. Members of the group discussed a number of concerns, specifically visa processing times and lack of accommodation. A new online appointment system for visa processing is expected to go live shortly - there doesn't appear to be a quick fix for accommodation, and it seems unlikely to come from a single source. The members of the group were presented with the draft strategy on International Education 2016-2020 which DES is eager to publish before the end of 2015. ASAPI suggested the highlighted text in this subsection of the strategy for inclusion in the full document which, in its draft form, did not acknowledge the significant role of the study abroad community in Ireland. ASAPI will monitor the continuing development of the strategy and continue to raise awareness of the study abroad sector in Ireland.
ASAPI, represented by co-Chair Stephen Robinson of Champlain College, attended a meeting of European Country Study Abroad associations recently. The meeting was hosted by Webster University in Geneva, and was attended by representatives of country associations from Spain, Switzerland, Italy, Austria, Germany, and Ireland. Delegates discussed the development of a Europe-wide study abroad association to share information, provide training, and lobby the EU government, and to provide support for all of those who affect the study abroad experience in Europe. The group will be presenting at the CIEE Conference in Berlin in November, and will hold another group meeting at the conference. For more information, please contact Stephen Robinson at srobinson (at) champlain.edu.
Our colleagues at The Irish Council for Overseas Students (ICOS), an independent, national membership-based organisation that advocates for the rights of international students who choose Ireland as a study destination, have developed a training resource called "Diverse Voices," comprising a video and guide for higher education professionals working with international students in Ireland. The video looks wonderful. It is composed of short, thematic sections exploring topics such as cross-cultural adaptation, culture shock and homesickness; cultural difference and cross cultural communication; adapting to a new academic environment (including language, intercultural classroom, approaches to assessment); and advice on supporting international students. ICOS interviewed over 35 international students and staff (both academics and support staff) from five higher education institutions as part of the video project. It includes a genuinely diverse range of participants.
The resource pack is being made available free-of-charge to ICOS member institutions and also is available for purchase – see www.icosirl.ie.
ASAPI welcomes the acknowledgement and inclusion of the study abroad sector in the most recent Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service policy statement on the international education sector. INIS writes that "Established semester programmes (primarily involving students from US universities attending courses in Irish colleges) will be dealt with outside the ILEP arrangements by the Department of Justice and Equality. The Government recognises the cultural exchange potential of such programmes and the linkages between prestigious universities overseas and Irish colleges with a track record in this field and supports their continued operation." (Page 10-11, note 3) The recognition of study abroad in official government policy is a signficant step forward and ASAPI will continue its dialogue and advocacy for greater understanding of study abroad with INIS and the Department of Education and Skills on a direct basis as well as members of the High Level Group on International Education.
The full text of the policy statement is available here: Policy statement on International Education Final
Under the agreement, Minister O’Sullivan’s Department will provide $100,000 to IIE’s Generation Study Abroad fund which will see Ireland participating as a Lead Signature Partner. The majority of the funding will be used to provide incentive grants to colleges and universities from across the United States, which the institutions will match and award as student scholarships which will be known as Ireland - IIE Generation Study Abroad Scholarships.
The Foundation for International Education is offering ASAPI affiliated students a 20% discount on the registration fee for their 2015 Student Global Leadership Conference being held in London on April 12, 2015. In addition to recruiting student delegates, the call for proposals is open to professional colleagues. If you have any questions about the conference or proposals, please contact ASAPI co-chair (and FIE Dublin Director), Karl Dowling.
The Association of Study Abroad Providers in Ireland (ASAPI) has been given further details by the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade on the Ireland Working Holiday visa. This visa allows US citizens to work and travel within Ireland for up to 12 months. In order to qualify for the program, participants must be either in full-time (i.e. not part time or online) post-secondary education, or have graduated within the last 12 months of their application for the Working Holiday Authorisation. Applications can be made through the Irish Embassy in Washington or the relevant Irish Consulate in the US. We regularly hear from US study abroad students in Ireland who want to return after graduation, and this program provides them with the opportunity.
Please promote this program to your students as a great option for US students who want to live, travel, and work in a fantastic country.
For more information please see https://www.dfa.ie/travel/visas/us-ireland-visa-arrangements/
The 2014 Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange, was released today. The report shows that overall, the number of US students studying abroad grew by 2% from 2011/12 to 2012/13. The number of US students choosing Ireland grew at almost three times that rate. Ireland remains a top ten destination for US students studying abroad. Great infographic linked below (still figuring out WordPress at ASAPI towers!).
Institute of International Education. (2013).Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange. Retrieved from http://www.iie.org/opendoors
The Forum on Education Abroad, a non-profit organization recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice and the Federal Trade Commission as the Standards Development Organization (SDO) for the field of education abroad, will be holding two workshops on their Standards of Good Practice at UCD on 21 November 2014. The first workshop will be an overview of the Standards, and the second will focus on Focus on Standard 4 (Student Preparation for the Learning Abroad Environment & Returning Student Support) and Standard 5 (Student Selection and Code of Conduct). For more details, see http://forumea.org/UCDworkshops14.cfm