Monday, November 2, 2009

Barnard Expands VISP in China

Barnard College , one of the nation’s most distinguished liberal arts institutions and CU affiliate, pioneered the Visiting International Students Program (VISP)  to bring students from around the world for one semester to experience an American liberal arts education. Shortly after the launching of the Global Center in Beijing, Barnard College, with the assistance of the Beijing Center, agreed to add Beijing Foreign Studies , Beijing Normal University , and China Foreign Affairs University to its array of international partnerships.

In an effort to internationalize the student body at Barnard, 17 students have been chosen by the aforementioned Chinese universities and approved by Barnard to partake in a semester-long program through which they take a full academic course load and live on-campus, starting in Spring 2010. These Chinese students, like other VISP students from Italy, South Korea and Denmark, are expected to be fully immersed in the residential and academic community of not only Barnard but Columbia University in general. Students will have complete access to all campus services and will be guided by faculty members as they explore the convergences and divergences of university life as compared to their home institutions. Students from these prestigious Chinese universities are vetted for excellence and selectively chosen in order to maximize integration into the Barnard community.

Bound by a shared global perspective and a consensus that diversity and internationalization are vital to the intellectual environment of any campus, the Global Center in Beijing and Barnard College have forged a union which, like their respective ambitions, is not limited by conventional borders.          

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