Exchanges in the media

An increasing number of online students in the U.S. are participating in study abroad experiences, reports U.S. News & World Report.

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Growing concerns about the spread of the Ebola virus may have an impact on international education connections with West Africa, reports the Washington Post. Increased scrutiny of student flows to and from West Africa arose as a second case of Ebola transmission in the U.S.

The Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) is an important opportunity “to help bring about a more prosperous future for both the United State and our ASEAN partners,” according to Secretary of State John Kerry. Kerry outlined the role of YSEALI in a speech on the importance of business and economic relations between the U.S. and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN):

(Update: 10/8/14 at 3:45pm)

As the Alliance previously reported, the Russian government has cancelled its participation in the Future Leaders Exchange (FLEX) high school exchange program for the upcoming 2015-16 term. A round-up of various media coverage of this event is below:

October 7

Leaders in the field of U.S.- China relations emphasized the continued importance of investing in public diplomacy efforts, particularly student exchange programs, at the launch of the 100,000 Strong Report on Tuesday. Josette Sheeran, President and CEO of the Asia Society, underlined the strategic value of exchanges:

“These initiatives are not just about feeling good and getting to know each other, but can do big things.”

There is a growing focus on international student retention rates in the U.S., due to the increasing number of international students studying at American universities, according to World Education Services (WES). Additionally, several countries with large numbers of incoming international students, including Canada, Australia, the U.K., and the U.S., are engaging in efforts to better support their international student communities:

The Fulbright Program remains vital to the U.S.’ educational, scientific, economic, and political partnerships, according to Tara Sonenshine, former Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs. Sonenshine recently wrote a blog post in the Huffington Post underlining the positive impacts of the program on public diplomacy:

In a recent Huffington Post blog post, 100,000 Strong Foundation president Carola McGiffert calls for the diversification of study abroad to China. The general homogeneity of study abroad poses a disadvantage for not only underrepresented students themselves, but also U.S. businesses and the U.S. government, McGiffert writes.

Graduates with international experience gain both short and long-term employment benefits, as well as job mobility, according to a new impact study conducted on the Erasmus program. Both studying and interning abroad were found to improve students’ rankings on key skills deemed important by employers, and these experiences were also linked to lower unemployment rates.

Confucius Institutes continue to increase in number and funding, despite growing criticism against the institutes in the United States and a questionable impact on China’s soft power, reports The Economist.

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