Study in India Program
2014 Heiskell Award Honorable Mention: Internationalizing the Campus
Nomination submitted by: Prof. Aparna Rayaprol, Director, Study in India Program
The University of Hyderabad’s Study in India Program (SIP) for foreign students began as a small experimental summer initiative where students from the University of Pittsburgh took nine credits over nine weeks in the summer of 1998. Since then, SIP has grown in leaps and bounds and has gone from hosting eight students in its debut year to nearly 200 in the most recent academic year. The University Grants Commission (UGC), a governmental organization in India tasked with determining and maintaining standards for university education, has hailed the Study in India Program as a model initiative and has encouraged other universities in India to emulate the program’s approach.
The Study in India Program started in 1998 as an experiment in internationalization on a campus which only granted master's and doctoral degrees at the time. There was severe resistance to having undergraduate students on campus even for shorter periods. The university, however, had an internationally trained faculty that could easily design courses for international students. Instead of designing an Orientalist program for foreign students to come and study in “a land of rishis and snake charmers,” the university came up with a flexible program designed for foreign students to understand India as a global leader in a post-colonial world. SIP’s strength is its flexibility and willing to innovate to meet the needs of universities and study abroad consortia. SIP has created specialized, tailor-made programs for partners such as Dartmouth College, Duke University and the Nordic Centre in India - a consortium of 15 Nordic universities. Students can apply on their own, through their home schools, or through study abroad consortia that are SIP partners.
From housing students in a small apartment and the University Guest House in the early years, the university has gradually moved to building an exclusive residence hall, the Tagore International House, which provides housing for about 150 international students and 12 faculty suites. SIP students have now become an integral part of both the academic and the cultural fabric of the institution.