Millersville University (MU) encourages individual faculty, staff, and departments to initiate new international partnerships and assist in developing current partners, in order to foster MU’s mission for providing a diverse, dynamic, meaningful experience to inspire learners.
If you would like to see current short term teaching opportunities at our international partners, follow the webpage below.
In order to develop new international partnerships that align with MU goals and the Office of International Programs & Services's (IPS) international mission, all potential international partners must be thoroughly researched, assessed and approved by various constituents at MU. IPS is committed to providing the best possible global experience for students and faculty at MU and ask anyone who is proposing a new partnership to carefully consider the rationale for the program and thoroughly read through the following information related to new program development.
Factors to Consider for New Partnerships
Themes of International Partnership Building
- Strategic Partnerships: the shift from ad hoc friendship agreements to agreements that are considerably more comprehensive in nature;
- Quality Vs. Quantity: increased selectivity as institutions establish partnerships that contribute to their internationalization portfolios in various ways;
- Diversity of Partnerships: the rise of short-term, collaborative degrees, and research-or industry-focused programs;
- Partnerships in New and Emerging Markets: a commitment to the introduction of partnerships in nontraditional destinations or with locations not already partnering with MU.
Evaluating New International Partnerships
IPS will consider the following factors:
Background and Goals for the partnership:
- Partnership proposals must include a description of the proposed partnership, identify specific activities or programs, desired resources, and obligations provided by each partner institution.
- Does the partnership align with Millersville's strategic goals?
- The breadth of collaboration (potential university is interested in multiple ways of partnerships).
- Review of current mobility partnerships through third party providers in the intended location.
- Evidence for student or faculty interest in location (Target numbers, student inquiries for location, etc.).
- Academic opportunities available to MU students at partner institution that may not be available to students at MU (Research and study opportunities, internships, or service learning options, etc.).
- What are the expected outcomes of the proposed relationship and how do they benefit various stakeholders?
- Potential quality and sustainability of the partnership and the benefits to both institutions.
- Is this a university-wide partnership, or is it limited to a particular school/college?
- Successful partnerships typically involve multiple champions outside of the IPS office. Who are the individuals taking primary responsibility for the partnership?
- In what ways are the faulty members, departments, and/or colleges committed to a sustained partnership?
- What are the ongoing academic and human resources needed to sustain the partnership?
Financial Commitment/Resources/Staffing Needs:
- What are the financial implications of the proposed partnership?
- What university resources are being committed?
- Does grant or contract funding support any activities to be conducted as part of this agreement?
- What are the comprehensive costs, available scholarships, and what is the financial structure of the partnership?
Accreditation, Legal Status, Accountability of Proposed Partner:
- What is the accreditation or legal status of the proposed partner(s) within its own country? Within the US? Who is the accrediting body?
- Does the university hold any regional or national rankings?
- Does the potential partner have established governance and accountability practices that adhere to local, regional, and/or national legal requirements in their country?
- Does the partner have the necessary administrative infrastructure, resources, and personnel within the organization to support the proposed program?
- Does the institution have financial practices that are accountable, transparent, and independently audited?
Adequacy of Health, Safety Precautions and Research Regulations:
- Are there any safety concerns related to student, faculty, or staff mobility? (High risk-locations, State Department travel advisories, etc.)
- What resources are available to MU students or MU faculty at partner institution (on-campus support, physical and mental health resources, orientation programs, arrival services etc.)
- What is the geographical location and campus access to nearby cities or towns (Size of city, public transportation options, housing options and safety of location etc.)
- Does the proposed program comply with all university policies, procedures, and ethical standards?
- No international program will be initiated or continued if it requires Millersville University, its staff or faculty, to violate the laws and regulations of the US, the policies of the university, or those of the host government.
In addition to the above factors, when a partnership is renewed it is viewed from the perspective of the Partnership Rubric.
Types of International Partnerships
The Memorandum of Understanding is a formal agreement describing a broad outline of collaboration between two or more parties. The general MOU will give a written expression of interest in general partnership. Many activities can be done under a general MOU. This partnership type could include any of the following student and faculty mobility activities:
- Short-term programs:
- Incoming: MU offers customized programs through the English Language Institute (ELI) in the summer and winter terms. Student programs are thematic, addressing topics such as language and culture, university preparation programs, and others. The ELI also offers training programs for international faculty and staff through the Summer Management Institute.
- Outgoing: Faculty-led study abroad at Millersville is called MU Guided. Faculty can work with our international partners to develop MU Guided programs for students. These are typically offered in the summer, winter, or spring break.
- Faculty exchange:
- Incoming: MU hosts international exchange scholars and visitors from various countries to conduct research, teach, and work in a variety of capacities throughout the institution.
- Outgoing: Faculty exchanges are excellent catalysts for deeper partnerships, and federally-funded programs such as the Fulbright Scholar Program can facilitate these opportunities for you. Faculty can work through our existing partners to guest lecture or collaborate on research.
- Short term collaborative projects with students and/or faculty.
- Collaborative teaching (virtual, hybrid, video conferencing or guest lectures). This low-cost partnership component is often fostered by technology through virtual classrooms, video conferences, email exchanges, and web-based platforms. Consider working with a partner institution to develop new course modules. Collaborative teaching is also an effective way to incorporate guest faculty in the classroom and is a good springboard for other collaborative efforts.
- Transfer program: Similar to a dual-degree program in terms of various models, except the student earns one degree. Students transfer credit and earn a degree from either the host intuition or the home institution.
- Consortia: A group of two or more institutions that work together and pool resources in order to achieve a common goal. Consortia are a great way to broaden a partnership and take advantage of institutions with complementary strengths.
Some partnership collaborations require additional details to be confirmed in writing in addition to the general MOU.
Student Exchange Amendment
- Exchange program: An exchange partnership is an agreement with a partner institution that involves direct exchange of students to and from the partner institution and MU. Typically, MU will send students to the partner institution in exchange for receiving students from the partner institution to study at MU. Participants will enroll as exchange students at the partner university for 1-2 semesters but will pay their tuition at MU for that term.
- 1:1 Model – MU will send one student to the partner institution in exchange for receiving one student from the partner institution to study at MU.
- 2:1 Model – MU will send two students to the partner institution in exchange for receiving one student from the partner institution to study at MU.
- Unidirectional program: A unidirectional partnership is an agreement between two institutions that allows the direct study and enrollment of students from one institution to the other. The program is similar to exchange programs in duration (1-2 semesters), independence, and academics, but does not provide two-way mobility.
- Special academic program: These are programs that allow students to participate in an internship or practicum academic component. For MU students this could be international student teaching, field placements for certain majors such as Social Work, or internships.
- Articulation program: An articulation is an agreement with a partner institution which documents the transfer policies in a specific field of study or major. This program goes into detail regarding guaranteed admission or conditional admission, transfer credits, scholarships, and academic course requirements.
- Dual-degree program: A dual-degree program allows an agreement with a partner institution in a specific field of study or major to transfer courses to MU to complete an MU degree in addition to completing a degree in the student’s home institution. All new partnerships of this type are required to also be articulated.
- 2+2 Model: This is the most common model. The student spends two years in their home institution before transferring to MU.
- 1+3 Model: The student spends only one year in their home institution before transferring to MU.
- 1+2+1 Model: This is a special program through the Cooperation on Higher Education and Professional Development program, and will not be repeated with any other partnership.
- Others: There are many other types of dual-degree partnerships. Contact IPS if you’d like to discuss other models not listed above.
Other International Collaboration
Some projects and initiatives do not fit within any of the above categories and may or may not require an agreement to meet the objectives of the relationship. Please consult the Office of International Programs & Services for guidance on how to proceed.
- Short-term programs: