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IU Communications

Julia Kent
Council of Graduate Schools

Last modified: Thursday, September 13, 2012

IU dean joins university leaders in statement on preparing students for global careers

Sept. 13, 2012

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- James C. Wimbush, dean of the University Graduate School at Indiana University, was one of 34 higher-education leaders from 15 countries who recently agreed on a set of principles to guide the preparation of graduate students for the demands of the global workforce and economy.

The statement was released following the sixth annual Strategic Leaders Global Summit, "From Brain Drain to Brain Circulation: Graduate Education for Global Career Pathways," which took place this month in Seeon, Germany. Jointly hosted by the U.S.-based Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) and the Technische Universität München, the invitation-only summit is an annual event designed to promote international best practices on current issues in master's and doctoral education.

"I am especially pleased that Indiana University is a recognized leader in international education," Wimbush said. "IU not only embraces the principles, but with the recently formed School of Global and International Studies and international experiences stemming from the University's International Strategic Plan of 2008, we are even more poised to equip our graduate students with global competencies for productive careers at home and abroad."

The 2012 summit, titled "From Brain Drain to Brain Circulation: Graduate Education for Global Career Pathways," reexamined the concept of "brain drain" in light of several global trends:

  • Global research and development networks, along with new technologies for collaboration, are stimulating research that benefits multiple countries and regions.
  • Many countries are making new investments in graduate education in order to maintain a strong domestic talent pool and to recruit international students.
  • Evidence suggests that researchers and highly educated professionals may work in multiple countries over the course of their careers.

Session topics addressed new patterns of talent mobility by country and region, new opportunities for students to develop global skills, and collaborations between international universities that prepare students for the global workforce.

In the final session, participants discussed key issues that emerged in the forum and developed a consensus statement to guide future action. The "Principles for Supporting Global Careers in Graduate Education" include integrating international experience into graduate degree programs, defining high-level global skills, and collaborating with external partners to stimulate multidirectional flows of knowledge workers.

"The principles will help advance the global conversation about a key priority for graduate schools -- helping students and new researchers make the transition to successful careers," said Council of Graduate Schools President Debra Stewart. "But they also take us into important new territory, providing guidelines that will help universities prepare future researchers to understand the global possibilities and impacts of their professional lives."

The 34 participants included deans and other leaders of graduate schools and representatives of national and international associations devoted to graduate education. Along with Germany and the United States, the countries represented were: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, China (PRC and Hong Kong), Denmark, Hungary, Luxembourg, Malaysia, the Netherlands, Singapore, South Africa and South Korea.

The consensus statement is available online. A proceedings volume will be published in 2013.

About CGS

The Council of Graduate Schools is an organization of more than 500 institutions of higher education in the United States and Canada engaged in graduate education, research and the preparation of candidates for advanced degrees. Among U.S. institutions, CGS members award 92 percent of doctoral degrees and 77 percent of the master's degrees. The organization's mission is to improve and advance graduate education, which it accomplishes through advocacy in the federal policy arena, research and the development and dissemination of best practices.