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International Relations Network – Highlights of PSUT’s progress

Tuesday, May 18, 2021 - 09:30

 

Since its establishment three decades ago, Princess Sumaya University for Technology has been engaged in activities that support international cooperation, concluding hundreds of agreements and memoranda of understanding with many higher education institutions and international organizations involved in the higher education and scientific research sector.

Its international networking is based on a number of axes, most notably academic and research cooperation, joint programs, and international cooperation projects for developing and building capacities in the higher education sector, and the cultural exchange of employees and students through the Office of International Relations which seeks to strengthen PSUT's relations with prestigious and distinguished universities and reinforce its position among international universities.

Over the years, PSUT has signed more than 500 cooperation agreements and memoranda of understanding with Arab, regional and international universities, institutions and various research centers to enhance cooperation opportunities in the fields of scientific research, exchange of expertise, development of study plans and programs, and cultural exchanges that serve the teaching and administrative bodies and students.

Here, PSUT’s president, Prof. Mashhoor Al-Refai, believes that international cooperation in its true sense would elevate any university to the ranks of the prestigious international universities, if the file is managed with intelligence, accuracy, and great self-confidence.

Al-Refai highlights the fact that PSUT was launched under the directives of HRH Princess Sumaya bint El Hassan, Chair of its Board of Trustees, from a local reality, whose needs, conditions and capabilities were known, armed with far-sighted global visions. He added that this vision represents a fundamental and strategic point in the University's work.

The International Relations Office works to strengthen cooperation ties with the EU and relevant international organizations to attract more funded projects to serve the University and its future goals, in addition to expanding cultural exchange programs for faculty and administrative staff members and students with many international universities.

The Director of the Office, Dr. Radhi Al-Hamadeen, says that in order to strengthen the international presence and to ensure PSUT's participation in international and regional academic gatherings and alliances, the Office has worked to include the University's name in many international federations that bring together higher education institutions from all around the world. These include the International Association of Universities (IAU), the Union of Euro-Mediterranean Universities (UNIMED), of which Prof. Mashhoor Al-Refai was elected to represent Jordan on its Board of Directors, the Euro-Mediterranean Universities Network (TETHYS), and the Association of Arab Universities (AARU).

Al-Hamadeen added that PSUT has been keen to actively participate in international cooperation projects devoted to the development of the higher education sector and to increase the participation of this sector in the development process at the local and international levels. He indicated that during the past two decades, PSUT has managed to participate in 44 projects funded by the European Commission under the umbrella of European cooperation programs in the higher education sector and regional cooperation projects such as Tempus, FP7, Erasmus Mundus, ENI CBC, and Erasmus+. The University has served as the manager of five of these projects with the participation of many European and regional universities, with a total budget of 5 million Euros.

In general, the projects focused on capacity development and the transfer of best European practices in the higher education sector, including the fields of governance and administrative unit development, quality assurance, e-learning and learning development, curricula and study plan development, among others.

PSUT has also worked on creating a diversified cultural exchange program that includes all academic programs at the undergraduate and postgraduate levels, in addition to the Global Internship Program.

Currently, PSUT maintains a total of 28 cultural exchange agreements with 11 EU countries funded by the International Credit Mobility (ICM) program under the umbrella of the European Erasmus+ project. Moreover, there are many bilateral cultural exchange agreements signed with a number of international universities, including 55 agreements with Turkish universities, which include cultural exchange programs for students and employees under the umbrella of the Mevlana Exchange Program.

Within its strategic plan, PSUT will work in the coming years to obtain more international accreditations for its academic programs (those recently launched and those to be introduced in the coming years), and to raise its standing in the international rankings. It will also seek inclusion in new global academic alliances such as the Federation for Education in Europe (FEDE), which includes more than 500 universities, businesses and companies, This would provide excellent training and work opportunities for PSUT students in various business sectors in many European countries, and serve to integrate students into cultural exchange programs by expanding the network of cooperation and enhancing the experience of virtual cultural exchange. The University will continue to hold the International Week event that attracts international and regional partners and a number of local universities. Finally, it will work to increase the opportunities for members of faculty and administrative employees to participate in international projects by submitting proposals for capacity-building projects funded by the EU, which will be launched in their new form in the fall of 2021 and continue until 2027.

PSUT is a partner in a joint Master's program in Engineering Management with the University of Arizona - Tucson, and offers joint programs to complete the Master's and Bachelor's degrees in Business Administration with the University of Michigan. It also runs a joint undergraduate program in Computer Science with Indiana University and shared programs in Engineering and Computer Science majors for Master's and Bachelor's degrees with Oakland University, in addition to a joint Master's program in Management Information Systems. The University also runs a cultural exchange program for both students and faculty members with Hasselt University in Belgium and a Master's program in European Studies with the German University of Düsseldorf. Furthermore, all of PSUT’s Schools have obtained American accreditation.