By Kate O’Neill
The American Council on Education (ACE) Internationalization Lab steering committee, led by 15 senate committee representatives, faculty at large, and faculty administrators, has begun a review of campus internationalization efforts.
Chancellor George Blumenthal and Campus Provost/Executive Vice Chancellor Marlene Tromp announced this effort in November. UC Santa Cruz is one of 11 institutions participating in the 16th cohort of the ACE Internationalization Laboratory cohort.
“This effort will support the development of comprehensive internationalization strategies for our campus with the goal of integrating global perspectives in all areas of teaching, research, and scholarship, and leveraging the possibilities to move forward the Strategic Academic Plan,” said Interim Vice Provost of Global Engagement Richard Hughey.
The 18-month process begins with a broad assessment of current international activities on campus. CP/EVC Tromp formed and charged a new Internationalization Lab steering committee in partnership with the Academic Senate to identify priorities for internationalization on our campus and to propose a realistic plan for implementing them.
During winter, the steering committee initiated the data collection phase of this process. Committee members are visiting department meetings throughout the early part of the quarter to engage with faculty in person, and learn about their internationalization efforts and challenges. Additionally, the committee is distributing a questionnaire to department chairs that seeks more detailed information about departmental successes, and any barriers to expanding future internationalization efforts.
The departmental visits so far have shown the high levels of engagement on issues and initiatives related to internationalization on campus, in California, and throughout the world. Our faculty across the spectrum of disciplines are working with colleagues around the world, seeking to create new knowledge and ideas, promote social justice and, as with the strategic academic plan, understand the earth’s futures. Common challenges have included, not surprisingly, funding and short-term housing for collaborators. Many visits have turned up new potential institutional collaborations, potential campus initiatives to support undergraduate and graduate students, and ongoing conversations about the intersections of internationalization and multiculturalism.
Throughout the spring and summer, the steering committee will analyze the data to determine where the campus can most effectively focus energies. After the committee members identify the institutional priorities, they will work with campus constituencies to devise a strategic implementation plan that will lead the campus to enhanced internationalization efforts.
In the final stage of the Internationalization Lab process, with opportunities for the campus community to comment, the committee will provide the implementation plan to UCSC leadership, who will determine how best to proceed towards a more global university. The Internationalization Lab process will be complete by August 2020.
For all individuals interested in this effort, the ACE Internationalization Lab website is a resource that includes details about the lab, timeline, and participants. We’ll be updating the site as the process unfolds. We hope you will take part in bringing a global perspective to our campus goals of teaching, research, and service.