Fostering cross-cultural connections through international exchange at IEU

@Melissa Haun

One of IE University’s principal goals is to offer our students an international education. We strive to provide a meaningful cross-cultural experience that prepares them to become global leaders after graduation.

This philosophy is reflected in the work of the IEU International Mobility Department, which is dedicated to making the international experience as positive as possible for every undergraduate exchange student.

IEU has partnerships with over 115 institutions worldwide, and the foreign exchange program is one of the most demanded services among students. Over 70% of domestic students choose to go abroad during their time at IEU. Our Madrid and Segovia campuses receive around 400 undergraduate exchange students each year, greatly enriching the school’s multicultural environment.

On-campus support for international exchange

The International Mobility Department works with domestic students who are planning to go abroad, as well as with incoming international exchange students. In both cases, they ensure that the application and transition process is as smooth as possible. For outgoing exchange students, they offer guidance and insight into IEU’s partner institutions. They also organize info sessions and the annual International Mobility Fair, where domestic students can talk to international exchange students who are currently studying at IEU.

Incoming exchange students receive plenty of support from the International Mobility Department throughout the admission process. Once they arrive at the IEU campus, they’re greeted with a whole week of activities to help them adjust and settle in. Events include orientation sessions, culture shock workshops, tapas nights, speed networking and more. These new international students are immediately welcomed into the IEU community with open arms. This is just one of the many ways that we embrace cultural diversity and promote a global outlook among our students.

IEU students in class

An international environment enhances education

What makes IEU’s international exchange program so special? According to Andreea Vitalaru, International Mobility Coordinator at IEU, “what truly sets us apart from other institutions, apart from our exclusive partnerships with prestigious universities worldwide, is the dedication and effort we put into the process.”

At IEU we know how valuable the international exchange experience can be. The opportunity to study abroad allows our students to grow personally, academically and professionally, learning more about themselves and expanding their global networks along the way. Incoming exchange students not only get to enjoy the vibrant culture of Spain, but also contribute to the rich diversity in backgrounds, ideas and perspectives that characterizes IEU’s unique educational environment.

The International Mobility Department Team

 

Promoting diversity through cultural exchange

This focus on diversity is one of our core values, and it’s central to the mission and vision of IEU. “In our institution it is very important to have a wide array of diverse groups in the classroom, not only because it creates a realistic setting, but also because it encourages our students to grow and learn things about cultures they may not be familiar with,” says Andreea.

In today’s globalized world, cross-cultural experience is absolutely vital for success—not only during the university years, but also beyond graduation. Intercultural communication and awareness of cultural differences are some of the most highly valued skills in the professional realm. Thanks to the international exchange program, IEU students have the chance to start developing these skills early on in their academic careers, putting them one step closer to becoming the leaders of tomorrow.