International Engagement

The University creates rich opportunities for international engagement for students, faculty, staff, and alumni, and collaborates and communicates globally.

No journey carries one far unless, as it extends into the world around us, it goes an equal distance into the world within.
Lillian Smith

The photos of the UBC C.K. Choi Building and UBC students working in Africa
Great universities are bridges between communities and continents. Hubs of intellectual and cultural interchange, they embody the values of respect and service while expanding opportunities for individuals to carry these values into the world.

UBC recognizes the inherent power of international learning to reveal new worlds, open spirits, and change lives. The University builds on successes in international teaching, learning, research, and service to increase engagement at every level. International initiatives include research and institutional partnerships; community and overseas service; and international development ventures, all in regions strategically chosen to cultivate our strengths.

The critical challenges of our day transcend borders. Our ability to address them depends on transcending borders, too: those dividing disciplines and nations. UBC assumes its responsibilities at the centre of dialogue and activity, leading an ethical approach and working with sister institutions to strengthen Canada’s role on the world stage.

Goal Increase the capacity of UBC students, faculty, staff, and alumni to engage internationally

Portfolio Action

Foster student learning internationally

  • 33 new and renewed student mobility agreements (for both campuses) developed this year for a total of 1400 spaces available at 264 partner institutions around the world.
  • About 3000 UBC students have benefited from a study abroad experience either in Global seminars, Coordinated international experience, faculty led, GoGlobal led projects, Co-op programs and other university-related activity. Continued expansion of international learning opportunities.
  • About 1400 inbound students enrolled at UBC.
  • $1.4M in UBC scholarships and awards
  • Simon KY Lee Global Lounge continues to expand to incorporate more internationally-focused programming

Increase participation of graduate students and other researchers in collaborative projects with international counterparts

  • Financial and strategic support to the University projects with partner universities and organizations in the world. Joint fund with FUB, Joint scholarship program with Chongqing Municipal Education Commission and Mitacs, several partnerships in Europe and Asia

Improve the level of information available to students, faculty and staff on UBC’s international connections

  • Develop and relaunch the International engagement web site
  • Develop and launch a new cross-campus portal for all UBC international activities –
  • Launch of a new website for international engagement on the UBC Okanagan campus –
  • Expand the VPRI SharePoint site, to better disseminate important internal information on international engagement and activities
  • Develop and organize an annual institutional learning event, The UBC Internationalization Learning Day, in order to offer the community the opportunity to gather, celebrate, share and learn.
  • Dedicate a professional resource to gather data, analyze information and provide inputs to the University leadership about UBC international engagement and issues related to the internationalization of higher education (about 50% ETF of an international relations officer).
  • Become an information and reference hub for faculty and other units about internationalization processes and opportunities (about 50% ETF of an international relations officer).
  • Standardize the processes and disseminate the knowledge about how to develop partnerships and offer support to faculty and units (about 50% ETF of an international relations officer)

Goal Strengthen UBC’s presence as a globally influential university

Portfolio Action

Increase the number of substantial strategic partnerships in regions of priority to UBC

  • Strengthen the strategic relationship with Universities in Europe (Germany, France, UK, Denmark, Netherlands) and in Asia (China, India)
  • Offer strong support to UBC faculties to develop partnerships in Europe (Students mobility, new projects in France, Germany and UK) and in Asia (SERB Scholarship, IC-Impacts in India, ISI in India)
  • Host important University and official delegations to UBC (Mexico, Brazil, China, France, Germany, Australia, etc.)
  • Play a leadership role in the area of Canada-China Collaboration


Strengthen UBC’s role in international development

  • Support projects initiated by the faculty members and aiming at International development outcomes like IC-Impacts, CIRDI, Partnership with MasterCard Foundation, and Collaboration with Aga Khan Foundation in the education area, etc.
  • Be ready to contribute to mitigate International crisis issues and mobilize and support the community initiatives within the University mandate and rules.

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