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Purpose and Goals
What are the main components of the institution's internationalization strategy?
The direction for internationalization comes from the strategic plan, which spells out a specific course of action for internationalization. The ITF is a tool for internationalization. Its charge is to facilitate a dialogue about internationalization, collect data, publish a report, and produce an action plan that will both complement and supplement the strategic plan.
These strategies, consistent with the strategic plan, include pursing five areas of international activity: 1. Internationalization of Curriculum; 2. International students and faculty and student exchanges; 3. Study abroad; 4. Outreach programs; 5. Program development and partnerships.
Park's strategy includes a commitment to simultaneously reach out to all continents. This strategy also includes system-wide internationalization on all of Park's 42 campus centers.
How does this strategy take into account the institution's mission, history, and students?
Park University's history in intertwined with internationalization. Park College accepted its first international student in 1881, and has had an international flavor ever since. Founded on the motto of "Faith and Labor", Park has also offered opportunities to underserved domestic and worldwide communities. This includes the college's decision during World War II to courageously host Japanese students, despite the vehement objections of the community.
The strategic plan was produced after a lengthy, inclusive process of collaboration and consultation with staff, students, faculty, administration, alumni, and members of the community. It reflects their collective will and wisdom, and is reflective of Park University as an institution.
The ITF is facilitating a conversation about internationalization as a way of continuing the work done on the strategic plan. It is hoped that by creating an inclusive process, that internationalization becomes a concept that will be embraced by all Park's stakeholders.
How does the institution assess its progress in achieving its goals?
In each of the five areas (1. Internationalization of Curriculum; 2. International students and faculty and student exchanges; 3. Study abroad; 4. Outreach programs; 5. Program development and partnerships.), the office of International Education and Study Abroad has an assessment plan.
Also, at the conclusion of each program, the Global Future program, for example, an extensive assessment, including surveys, meetings, etc., occurs. These suggestions from the assessments are then used to improve the program offerings. For study abroad, students engage in daily written reflections and take a comprehensive survey at the end of the experience.
As for international coursework, these are subject to the standard departmental and university evaluation of courses.