“It is a complete understatement to say that CTU’s engagement with delegates to Barcelona was a great experience. It was beyond description, as CTU’s cause was made known to more than 20 institutions, mostly Erasmus-account holders, at the 4-day global networking event organized by the European Association of International Education (EAIE) in September,” said Dr. Rhodora Magan, University Director (UD) for Internationalization and ASEAN Integration (IAI).
Strategically, it poised the university as one of Southeast Asia’s viable allies among others on a platform missed for a long time due to the pandemic that impeded offline conferences in 2019 through 2021.
Introducing CTU to old and new institutions of learning that have carved global niches and whose reputations precede their names, Dr. Magan felt it was the greatest opportunity, by far, to consolidate alliances especially at a time when countless borders have been reopened.
The first day at Europe’s biggest event in the post pandemic was the most perplexing, added the UD for IAI. With 6000 registered participants, she did not know where to begin and who to get next to for some 15-minute pitching on CTU. But to her this was way better than staying behind the screen.
“As it felt comforting to warm things up before approaching anyone, I sat in one of the many sessions at the outset. There, my first acquaintance introduced herself as someone from an HEI in Turkey, whose offer of getting CTU on board for an Erasmus + funding was straightaway put on my plate. She’s God’s gift on the first day before I knew it.”
Succeeding days proved more fruitful, as she was led to more Erasmus-affiliated universities. Those in Romania, Spain, Germany, Turkey, Slovakia, Slovenia, Hungary, Lithuania, Czech, Norway, Switzerland, France, Portugal and Italy were some showing great reception of CTU’s proposal, continued the UD who was appointed in March.
Discussions primarily dwelt on student and staff mobility to ensure that CTU is boosting its outbound paradigm without having to comply with financial requirements anymore moving forward. She particularly highlighted this as the reason for the Spain agenda.
The last day offered another unique engagement with Israel’s Western Galilee College whose idea of partnering with CTU, its first in Southeast Asia, went with the most “emphatic” note of starting off right away with concrete activities before the year expires. Quite similar was the statement of Sultan Qaboos University in Oman.
“Both HEIs see CTU as a great partner, and this makes me feel more elated as the prospect of sending not just one or two constituents is now possible, given that more than two hosts have expressed their great desire to materialize CTU’s mobility plan.”
UD IAI spoke of how unique the trip was with respect to the university’s directive in staying true to its commitment to stakeholders.
“The decision to send me to Spain was more than noteworthy. Despite the obstacles, God’s mercy proved beyond measure as always. IAI’s presence in one of Europe’s most beloved cities is entirely hinged on God’s providence. Allowing students and staff to have the best experience at CTU as becoming one of its outbound scholars in the future is clear through diverse initiatives supported by the administration. Spain trip will go down in history as one of CTU’s stellar directions. Praise be to God!” /IAI