International Education Week 2015 – #IEW2015

international education week 2015

International Education Week ran all last week from November 16-20 as a joint initiative between the US’s Department of State and its Department of Education and was established to promote programs aimed at making the US more diverse and internationally-aware.

A significant focus of International Education Week was, therefore, international student recruitment and US study abroad programs, in which individuals, organisations and higher education institutions with a vested interest in international education are all encouraged to get involved.

Here are some of the highlights of the week:

Live Q&A

To start the week off, the assistant secretary of state at the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, Evan Ryan, held a live Twitter chat for those with questions about international study, with the help of alumni from its international exchange programs. The Twitter chat started a range of conversations on everything from the benefits of studying abroad to the implications of reverse culture shock.

Open Doors Report

There’s been a fair amount of hype over the release of the 2015 edition of the Institute of International Education’s (IIE) annual Open Doors Report on International Educational Exchange.

The release of the Open Doors report, often a highlight of International Education Week, showcases the growth in the number of international students taking courses within the US, with China and India being particularly noteworthy growth-drivers this year. And while US outbound student mobility grew by 5% in 2014/15, Ryan tweeted that this level of growth needs to continue in order for US to compete in the 21st century.


One of International Education Week’s biggest endorsements came from the first lady of the US (FLOTUS), Michelle Obama, who expressed that one of her core missions was encouraging young people to “take charge of their futures through education.”

In her letter of support, she drew attention to the theme of this year’s International Education Week – ‘Advancing Access for All’. This theme is said to symbolize a commitment to inclusive education, particularly for the 62 million girls worldwide who don’t currently have the opportunity to go to school.

Access for All

The year’s theme represents a further hashtag – #AccessForAll – that has been connected with International Education Week, or #IEW2015. Many Twitter-users have included this hashtag when tweeting about the program and its work in pursuing the ideal of making education accessible to all people, all around the world.

To keep up-to-date with International Education Week, as well as other higher education events, be sure to follow us on Twitter.

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