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IIE Leads U.S. and Indonesian Institutions in Developing a U.S. – Indonesia Higher Education Consortium

The USIPP Consortium seeks to advance all forms of educational exchange between the U.S. and Indonesia

NEW YORK, May 28, 2013—The Institute of International Education, in conjunction with leaders from twelve higher education institutions in the U.S. and Indonesia, launched the USIPP Consortium on May 28th at the annual NAFSA: Association of International Educators conference in St. Louis, MO. The USIPP Consortium is a private, bilateral initiative that brings together six U.S. and six Indonesian colleges and universities to collaborate on all forms of academic exchange, including study abroad programs, joint research, student exchange at all academic levels, as well as faculty exchange.

The current U.S. Consortium members are: Chatham University, Lehigh University, Miami Dade College, Northern Illinois University, the University of Michigan, and the University of Washington. The current Indonesian Consortium members are Airlangga University, Bandung Institute of Technology, Bogor Agricultural Institute, Gadjah Mada University, the Indonesian Institute of the Arts – Yogyakarta, and the University of Indonesia.

The USIPP Consortium is a direct result of the U.S.-Indonesia Partnership Program for Study Abroad Capacity (USIPP), a two-year initiative sponsored by the U.S Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) and administered by IIE’s Center for International Partnerships in Higher Education from 2010 to 2012. The initial goal of the ECA grant was to increase U.S. study abroad to Indonesia and throughout the grant period the cohort co-created four new study abroad programs, bringing 38 American students on faculty-led programs to Indonesia. In doing so, the twelve institutions developed a solid basis for expanding their partnership activities and unanimously decided to continue their work together through the USIPP Consortium.

The Consortium, which will be led by a rotating bi-national secretariat, includes three main goals in its framework: to support the 2010 Obama/Yudhoyono U.S. – Indonesia Higher Education Partnership by increasing student mobility in both directions; to facilitate the formation of mutually beneficial academic partnerships between U.S. and Indonesian institutions; and to generally increase all academic collaboration between the two countries. With these goals in mind, the Consortium members aim to co-develop activities that will develop future global leaders, further cutting-edge research, internationalize faculty, and provide innovative partnership models for the greater higher education community.

While the Consortium will engage in all forms of academic collaboration, undergraduate student mobility, graduate study, and faculty collaboration will initially be particular areas of focus. This is to build upon the strides made throughout the ECA-sponsored program, which include innovative programs such as the “Democratic Society and Religious Pluralism” program, originally co-developed by Lehigh University, the University of Michigan, and Gadjah Mada University in 2010. This program, which grew from eight student participants in 2010 to twelve participants in the current iteration, brings American and Indonesian students together to live and travel as a cohort to learn about the practical interactions of faith and politics, how societies can cultivate tolerance, and how individuals from diverse religious backgrounds can participate in a democratic community. Supported by a three-year, $190,000 grant from the Henry Luce Foundation to ensure the future of the program, the annual initiative now includes the University of Indonesia and Airlangga University; and has concrete plans to continue expanding both the participating institutions and the number of students in both countries. 

In addition to continuing and growing programs that were developed through the ECA grant, member institutions are diversifying their cooperation through international conferences, faculty research, and new study abroad programs. Franklyn Te, Senior Associate Professor in the Department of Natural Sciences, Health and Wellness at Miami Dade College, who was not part of initial ECA grant activities, has utilized MDC’s relationship with Airlangga University to develop a short-term Marine Sciences study abroad program this summer for 15 MDC students and two faculty members. MDC and Airlangga began their partnership activities through their USIPP-supported “Art, Design, and Architecture of Indonesia” program, which they developed jointly with Chatham University, the Indonesian Institute of the Arts – Yogyakarta, and Udayana University. This program brought 20 U.S. students to Indonesia in summer 2012.

The transition to the USIPP Consortium promises to be a smooth and logical extension of the two years these twelve institutions worked together under the ECA grant. IIE will continue to coordinate and lead Consortium activities for the first year, providing guidance on how to develop international consortia and acting as the main liaison between member institutions. However, member institutions purposely elected to include a rotating bi-national secretariat in the consortium by laws in order to ensure that the group is self-sustaining and interdependent in nature. In the coming years, as the Consortium gains traction, members will look to include additional institutions from both countries that are dedicated to expanding U.S. – Indonesia academic collaboration.

Visit USIPP to learn more about the USIPP Consortium, the ECA-sponsored USIPP program, and resources on developing U.S. – Indonesia partnerships.


About the Institute of International Education

The Institute of International Education is a world leader in the international exchange of people and ideas. An independent, not-for-profit organization founded in 1919, IIE has a network of 19 offices and affiliates worldwide and over 1,200 member institutions. IIE designs and implements programs of study and training for students, educators, young professionals and trainees from all sectors with funding from government agencies, foundations, and corporations. IIE also conducts policy research and program evaluations, and provides advising and counseling on international education and opportunities abroad.


About IIE’s Center for International Partnerships

IIE's Center for International Partnerships in Higher Education is a leader in the field of international partnership building, providing higher education institutions around the world with the resources and tools necessary to develop strategic partnerships with counterparts in other countries. The Center administers partnership-building programs, performs critical and timely policy research, maintains a network of international partnership experts, and provides training through workshops and conferences. In addition to administering the U.S. – Indonesia Partnership Program for Study Abroad Capacity, the Center currently administers the International Academic Partnership Program, which assists U.S. colleges and universities to develop a strategic plan for partnering with a variety of focus countries, including Brazil, India, Vietnam, and Cuba. For more information, please visit the Center for International Partnerships.

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Sharon Witherell
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