North Island College students will have access to more than $1 million to study abroad over the next four years, thanks to two new programs.
The grants will build on the college’s existing international exchange opportunities and alleviate some of the costs to students who might not otherwise be able to participate.
A $500,000 grant from Global Skills Opportunity — the Government of Canada’s outbound student mobility pilot program will be used for the Learning and Working Together to Build 2026 project. Drawing on student and faculty feedback, the project will focus on four key themes — Indigenization, decolonization, internationalization and environmental sustainability.
Students will also be able to access support from a second $700,000 Passage from Northwest Canada: Students from northern BC, Yukon, and Northwest Territories Go Global grant, which the college received in collaboration with four other post-secondary institutions in B.C., Northwest Territories, and the Yukon.
“We know that international travel is incredibly valuable for students, both in terms of their studies, but also in terms of their learning about the world and experiencing other cultures,” said Romana Pasca, NIC manager of international projects, partnerships and global education.
“This funding will allow us to provide scholarships to students to remove the financial barriers of studying abroad, particularly for students that traditionally have not engaged in study abroad opportunities. We’re also looking at adding more non-traditional travel opportunities for students.”
The programs support projects that provide post-secondary students with opportunities to study and work overseas and is designed to encourage low-income students, students with disabilities, and Indigenous students to participate in study and work abroad programming.
Along with supporting in-person study abroad opportunities, the funding will facilitate virtual collaborations with NIC’s international partners.
“We’ve been working with several NIC instructors that have expressed interest in building virtual exchange experiences into their classrooms,” said Pasca. “We’re currently working on opportunities with institutions in Costa Rica, Japan, Belgium, and Hawaii that will bring NIC students and international students together.”
For more information on studying abroad visit www.nic.bc.ca/study-abroad