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INTO Queen’s graduations – a proud moment for families and teachers

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INTO Queen’s graduations – a proud moment for families and teachers

As June melted into July, 167 former INTO Queen’s students celebrated their graduation at Queen’s University Belfast during a series of summer ceremonies.

As June melted into July, 167 former INTO Queen’s students celebrated their graduation at Queen’s University Belfast during a series of summer ceremonies. The INTO Queen’s alumni, resplendent in their graduation robes, were among the hordes of students, families and friends who assembled at the Sir William Whitla Hall on the University’s Belfast campus for the faculty ceremonies.  All of the former INTO Queen’s students had studied the International Foundation, International Year One and English language courses in 2015/2016. They were watched by their parents, teachers and families as they walked across the stage to collect their degree scrolls.… Read the full article
As June melted into July, 167 former INTO Queen’s students celebrated their graduation at Queen’s University Belfast during a series of summer ceremonies.

The INTO Queen’s alumni, resplendent in their graduation robes, were among the hordes of students, families and friends who assembled at the Sir William Whitla Hall on the University’s Belfast campus for the faculty ceremonies. 

All of the former INTO Queen’s students had studied the International Foundation, International Year One and English language courses in 2015/2016. They were watched by their parents, teachers and families as they walked across the stage to collect their degree scrolls.

One INTO alumni student in particular shone bright, receiving the ‘Highest Achieving International Graduate’ Award. Derrick Chua (pictured), from Singapore, studied the International Foundation in Business and Humanities and progressed to BSc Actuarial Science and Risk Management. He graduated top of his class and received an award from Queen’s Management School for his efforts, presented by local proprietor of Lunn’s Jewellers, Mr Barry McCahon.

Upon receiving his award, Derrick said “I am thankful to the teaching staff and learning environment at both INTO and Queen’s University Belfast. The constant motivational support and bond that I share feels more like a second family and ultimately, it allowed me to achieve ‘Highest Achieving International Award’.

“Graduating with a First Class Honours in Actuarial Science and achieving this recognition has definitely opened countless graduate opportunities for me. I look forward to joining the Actuarial profession and would recommend anyone to join the INTO Queen’s Community and share this experience!” 

Also among the graduating crowd was Chin Wei Ren, from Malaysia, who studied the International Foundation in Business, Humanities and Social Sciences at INTO Queen’s 2015 and progressed to a BSc in Finance with a year in industry.

Chin - who was accompanied by his proud mother, father and elder brother – had this to say about his study experience: “I think Queen’s has the perfect facilities for students; as a Finance student, I had access to a trading room with Bloomberg terminals which gave us an insight to financial trading and the experience of what it’s like in the finance industry.

“I chose to study at Queen’s because I fell in love with the beauty of the Lanyon building and the rankings are high in the UK and it is part of the Russell Group. Having studied and lived here for five years, I learned a lot from working for a year in industry, the local people here are very kind and were fun to work with and it’s something that I enjoyed the most about here.”

Some INTO teachers attended the graduation processions in order to celebrate the achievements of their former students and pay tribute to their hard work and dedication.

Among them was Orla McShane, Teacher of Economics, who said: “I’m really proud of the academic achievements of our alumni. Having taught my students from the beginning of this journey, it’s great to see them excel and succeed in their chosen subject areas. I have no doubt they will go on to acquire successful careers for themselves.”

You can view the photos of the graduations on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and a video of INTO Queen’s teacher, Dr Karen Johnston here.  

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INTO City prepares students to ‘venture into the unknown’

A series of graduation ceremonies in mid-July featured 115 students who, having taken the daunting step of leaving their home countries to study at INTO City, University of London around four years ago, are now ready to make a giant leap into their exciting futures. INTO City students shone bright – half of them achieved either a 2:1 or a First Class degree in subjects ranging from Business, Accounting and Finance to Engineering and Law. Alexandr, who is from Kazakhstan, graduated with a First Class undergraduate degree from Cass Business School and, during his studies, achieved the title of Top Performing Student in BSc (Hons) Investment & Financial Risk Management. “I do appreciate the hard work of INTO teachers in giving such an interesting and usef… Read the full article
A series of graduation ceremonies in mid-July featured 115 students who, having taken the daunting step of leaving their home countries to study at INTO City, University of London around four years ago, are now ready to make a giant leap into their exciting futures.

INTO City students shone bright – half of them achieved either a 2:1 or a First Class degree in subjects ranging from Business, Accounting and Finance to Engineering and Law.

Alexandr, who is from Kazakhstan, graduated with a First Class undergraduate degree from Cass Business School and, during his studies, achieved the title of Top Performing Student in BSc (Hons) Investment & Financial Risk Management. “I do appreciate the hard work of INTO teachers in giving such an interesting and useful knowledge to their students. It has been very helpful throughout my studies at Cass,” said Alexandr, who is now preparing to do his Master’s there.

Ali, who is from Saudi Arabia, studied INTO City’s International Foundation in Humanities and Law, progressed on to the LLB (Hons) Law degree programme at City University and has secured himself a job in a law firm in Saudi Arabia said: “INTO City was an amazing start to life and education in London and my future career. I met many people, learned vital things and enjoyed a year that will be in my memory for years to come.”

“INTO City gave me an opportunity to be ahead of most of students from the very beginning. Knowledge obtained in subjects such as Economics, Accounting and Business, was a pillow for me during the first year and made my learning progress faster than for other students who hadn’t been at INTO City,” added Ekaterina (pictured), who is from Russia and studied INTO City’s International Foundation in Business and Economics with Accounting, progressed to Cass Business School for BSc (Hons) Investment and Financial Risk Management and graduated with a First Class Honours degree.

And, finally student speaker, Amin (BSc Computer Science) summed up the mood nicely during his spot on the podium: “Now, looking back, four years ago, many of us stepped into the University building for the first time, full of uncertainty, and contemplating our future. Slowly, we began to form our own paths by discovering our potential, being presented with new opportunities and challenges, as well as taking risks to venture into the unknown,” he said, to much applause.

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Ekaterina INTO City

INTO awards celebrate teaching at four US centers

Since 2018, INTO has recognized innovation in teaching and learning across its US university partner network through five annual Academic Innovation Awards. Designed to encourage inter-center collaboration on the development of programs that support international student success, the 2019 awards were presented on July 11 at the Annual Academic Directors’ Conference at INTO Saint Louis University. “Each award goes to an individual or team in one of the centers that has developed a new project that can be easily adopted at other centers,” said Dr Sharon Sundue, Executive Director at INTO Drew University and Vice President of Academic Affairs for INTO… Read the full article
Since 2018, INTO has recognized innovation in teaching and learning across its US university partner network through five annual Academic Innovation Awards.

Designed to encourage inter-center collaboration on the development of programs that support international student success, the 2019 awards were presented on July 11 at the Annual Academic Directors’ Conference at INTO Saint Louis University.

“Each award goes to an individual or team in one of the centers that has developed a new project that can be easily adopted at other centers,” said Dr Sharon Sundue, Executive Director at INTO Drew University and Vice President of Academic Affairs for INTO University Partnerships, North America.  “What you have, then, is a whole mechanism for comparing notes on troubleshooting problems and sharing solutions.”

This year, four centers were recognized for their achievements: 

INTO University of Alabama – Birmingham (UAB)

A team of academic faculty at INTO UAB, led by Academic Director Amy Snow, took home an award for their Language Partners Program, a program that enables international students to meet regularly with native English speakers, thus encouraging cross-cultural communication and the development of language skills. 

Although similar programs are common to English language training initiatives, INTO UAB strategically recruits across campus to ensure that multiple University faculties reap the benefits.  For instance, the program is one of the University’s approved service-learning options used by the business, foreign languages, and international studies departments.  Moreover, the program helps domestic students of a foreign language to improve their language skills through practice with native speakers. 

INTO Washington State University (WSU)

INTO WSU earned two of the awards. The first went to Dustin Hinkle and Margaret Mount, two ESL instructors who had developed a program consisting of five one-hour sessions that use the University’s Owen Engineering Library to better equip graduate pathway students with the background knowledge, technical vocabulary and IEEE-specific writing skills needed for success in the graduate engineering program. 

Associate Director of Curriculum and Assessment Eman Elturki and ESL Instructor Jessica Bilek also received an award. Hers was for the creation of a study skills course for graduate pathway students that aims to help them to develop academic strategies and use campus resources more effectively. The program covers all study aspects - from time management techniques to the use of library databases.

INTO Oregon State University (OSU)

Julie Zwart, an ESL instructor from INTO OSU, received an award for her new approach to preparing international students for the GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test), one of which involves a 3-credit GMAT course, weekly small-group study tables, and a supplementary site with materials for self-study.  Zwart’s innovation addresses the fact that the majority of GMAT preparation materials are created for native English speakers—not for upper-intermediate, non-native speakers. 

Her curriculum incorporates materials that are level-appropriate for students and takes a step-by-step approach to the logical thought processed assessed by the GMAT, some of which may be unfamiliar to students from non-Western cultures.

INTO Drew University

Finally, Anya MacLachlan, Program Manager and ESL Instructor, picked up an award for creating a syllabus that enables teachers to handle multiple levels of English language learners in the classroom through the clever alternation of individual work and group instruction. This approach helps to provide a solution to the staffing challenge encountered by many ESL programs across the US, especially during summer sessions.

For more news about the Academic Directors’ Conference, please see our blog.

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INTO Academic Director Plus Student Services Conference Group Photo

INTO Exeter teachers reveal e-learning findings at major conference

Two teachers from INTO University of Exeter joined an eminent group of expert presenters at the tenth InForm Conference at the University of Reading this summer. During the event, entitled Evolution of International Foundation Programmes - Recognising a New Environment and Adapting to Change, Emdad Aziz and Alison Buckman, both business teachers at INTO Exeter, presented their research to representatives from 12 UK and one Russian university. For their Investigation on the Importance of Online Assessment in the E-Learning Process, Emdad and Alison performed a feasibility study on the formative assessment of both the Foundation Business (Accounting &… Read the full article
Two teachers from INTO University of Exeter joined an eminent group of expert presenters at the tenth InForm Conference at the University of Reading this summer.

During the event, entitled Evolution of International Foundation Programmes - Recognising a New Environment and Adapting to Change, Emdad Aziz and Alison Buckman, both business teachers at INTO Exeter, presented their research to representatives from 12 UK and one Russian university.

For their Investigation on the Importance of Online Assessment in the E-Learning Process, Emdad and Alison performed a feasibility study on the formative assessment of both the Foundation Business (Accounting & Finance) and International Year 1 Business (Management) programmes.

“Despite the fact that information and communication technologies are very widely used in other aspects of the learning process, many teachers are still carrying out formative assessments on paper. Our project aimed to show the benefits of using technology to both teacher and student,” said Emdad.

For the study, 28 students on INTO Exeter’s Foundation Business (Accounting & Finance) module and 56 students on its International Year 1 Business (Management) module students uploaded an essay on Turnitin software. Their five teachers then provided marks and feedback using the Rubric Mark Sheet (with direct link to the Learning Outcomes) and comments in Turnitin. At the end of the process, all participants were asked to comment on their experiences.

“We found that both students and teachers significantly favoured online- over paper-based assessment,” said Alison.

“The fact that the software enables students to refer back to both the initial question and guidance, and teachers to relate their assessments more directly to the desired learning outcomes, appears to have added up to a far better experience for both. And having the chance to present our research project to our colleagues at the conference was a challenge, but very rewarding,” she added.

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INTO Exeter Conference 2

4, 3, 2, 1: iGive Rockets Away

Two years ago, in July, iGive was, like Apollo 11, waiting on the launchpad. And like that spaceflight that first landed humans on the moon, iGive has rocketed high, raising in excess of £25,000 ($30,000 US) for a universe of causes this year alone. Read the full article
Two years ago, in July, iGive was, like Apollo 11, waiting on the launchpad. And like that spaceflight that first landed humans on the moon, iGive has rocketed high, raising in excess of £25,000 ($30,000 US) for a universe of causes this year alone.
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Rocket For I Give Article

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