Montreal top city for return on study abroad investment
The Canadian city of Montreal is the top destination for a return on investment in an undergraduate education overseas, according to new research by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU).
The Bank of Communications Sea Turtle Index, developed for the China-based bank through research by EIU as a guide for parents, compared 80 major cities worldwide and benchmarked: educational returns (40 per cent weighting), financial returns (12.5), real estate returns (12.5), work experience (20) and social experience (15).
Montreal achieved the highest score by this index, and Canada generally ranked highly with Toronto in fourth. London was rated as the second best city for return on study abroad investment, followed by Hong Kong in third.
Explaining Montreal’s position, the report said, “The quality of education at the institutions in the city is important, but Canada’s welcoming immigration policies, offering good opportunities for employment after graduation, also make it an appealing destination. Its comparative openness to foreign investors and its cultural diversity also boost its attractiveness as a destination for international undergraduates.”
In terms of educational returns alone, the UK ranked favourably with Cambridge, Oxford and London taking the top three slots respectively. Indicators in the index included QS university rankings, employer activity, the average cost of an undergraduate degree, cost of living and the range of programmes available.
Canada dominated the work experience index, which considers the ease of obtaining and length of post-study work rights, job-seeking support, unemployment rates and average wages. The top five cities were all Canadian – with Edmonton coming first – while the next six were Australian.
New campus residence for NSTS
NSTS English Language Institute, celebrating its 50th anniversary this year, has unveiled a new campus residence.
Located in Msida opposite the University of Malta sports grounds and the national swimming pool and within a short walk of the Sliema seafront and NSTS school, the residence includes single, twin and triple-bedded studios with private kitchenettes, en suite shower and toilet facilities, in addition to shared rooms sleeping up to five students. The custom-built junior wing features 170 beds for younger students.
Facilities include free Wi-Fi in common areas and rooms, air conditioning, a luggage store, social meeting lounge, outdoor pool, snack vending machines and 24/7 emergency support. NSTS also has a second accommodation residence in Sliema.
Travelling Languages moves to new location
Travelling Languages, an English language school in Ireland that combines classroom tuition with language immersion while touring the country, has moved to a larger premises to accommodate demand.
The new school and head office is in a house that was once famed novelist and playwright Samuel Beckett’s home and family office. The school is opposite the National Gallery and 50 metres from the birthplace of Oscar Wilde.
“These premises carry with them about 250 years of history in one of the oldest streets of Dublin,” said Salvatore Fanara, Director. “Travelling Languages could only be at the centre of Dublin and in an historical building. It could only be in an area full of history, culture and tourist interest.”
All classrooms feature flat screens for audio, video and multimedia activities, while a student common area is on the ground floor and an internet corner with PCs for students is also available, with free Wi-Fi throughout the building.”
UK sixth-form college enters Swiss education market
Oxford International Centre (OIC), a UK-based sixth-form college, has expanded into the Swiss market.
The new school, located in the Swiss mountain village of Chateau D’Oex, is the product of a joint venture between Barbara and Pascal Lorenzetti, co-Founders, and Mario Peters, Director and Principal of OIC.
OIC Switzerland will offer iGCSE, GCSE and A-level qualifications to Swiss and international pupils aged between 14 and 18, with a strong emphasis on personal development and university preparation.
In addition, OIC Switzerland will deliver a specialised Master Art Programme, in collaboration with Franck Bouroullec a highly regarded international artist. “We believe there is an explosion of students from Asia and the Eastern Bloc wanting to study Art & Design in Europe and then go onto famous art schools in the UK,” said Les Webb, Managing Director of UK-based agency Education Advisers, who is helping to promote the school to the overseas student market.
“This venture provides a unique new addition to the international sector for students seeking a high-quality, highly personal education in one of the world’s leading regions for education,” said Peters.
F+U Academy opens Berlin language school
F+U Academy of Languages has opened a new language centre in the German capital city of Berlin in October, adding to its existing schools in Heidelberg and Darmstadt.
The F+U Academy of Languages Berlin will provide group and individual courses in German as well as over 20 other languages, in addition to IT tuition and a variety of leisure activities. The new school will also operate as a test centre for a number of language exams. The language school will be located at the company’s Kontorhaus headquarters in Friedrichstrasse, within close proximity of the Gendarmenmarkt, the government quarter, Brandenburg Gate and Museum Island.
The same building houses the F+U University of Applied Sciences for Business, Technology and Culture, the F+U International University of Cooperative Education and the Center for Advanced Training in Business Administration. Accommodation options include host families and the school’s own hostel.
Karl-Heinz Rippel, Director of F+U Academy of Languages Heidelberg, said, “Berlin, magnet for tourism and the political and cultural centre of Germany, provides the perfect complement to Heidelberg, the tranquil university city of science, and to the modern city of Darmstadt with its renowned technical university.”
Bath Spa Uni signs deal with Shorelight to recruit students
Bath Spa University, UK, is looking to increase its international student numbers tenfold after announcing a partnership with US-based Shorelight Education, a newly established education group funding and managing international pathway and recruitment ventures with universities.
The partnership will see Shorelight Education establishing a Pathway College as well as Global Business Leadership College. The first intake in September 2014 will enable an additional 300 international students to study in Bath, rising to 2,000 over the following four years.
Jeremy White, Director of International Relations at Bath Spa University, said, “The UK has a great reputation for providing world-class higher education, and this partnership will enable more students from around the world to achieve a UK degree, as well as helping the university to grow and invest in the future.” He added that the partnership would provide a boost for the local community.
Students at the pathway college will study an intensive first year including language tuition, academic instruction and UK history and culture, and upon successful completion will join the second year of an established undergraduate degree course. The first pathway programme will provide progression onto the full BA Hons Business and Management course.
Shorelight Education has recently been established as a private equity and higher education group and is currently expanding its agent network. Partnerships with institutions in the US are expected to be announced over the coming months.
Tom Dretler, CEO and Co-Founder of Shorelight Education, said, “As an American education company primarily focused on partnering with world-class US universities, we were compelled to enter into this UK partnership because of the unique attributes of Bath Spa University, its innovative leadership team, and the attractiveness of the beautiful and historic city of Bath.”
Kaplan remains core to Washington Post Company
Global education provider Kaplan will now be “clearly the core” of the Washington Post Company, said Kaplan CEO Andrew Rosen, following the announcement that the Washington Post Newspaper has been sold to Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon.com Inc.
In an email sent to Study Travel Magazine, Rosen said, “I should make very clear that Kaplan not only remains part of the Washington Post Co, but it is now clearly the core of the Post Company.” The Washington Post newspaper and other publishing businesses were sold to Bezos in an individual capacity for US$250 million. Kaplan was not part of the sale agreement.
“For some years now, Kaplan has been the largest part of the Washington Post Co., and the most important determinant of its economic future. That wasn’t always understood by the broader market. It will be now,” he said in the statement.
Kaplan’s portfolio includes the Kaplan Higher Education Division, Kaplan Test Prep and Kaplan International, which offers English language, exam preparation and pathway programmes worldwide. In the 2013 second quarter financial report, the Washington Post Company which said it now intends to change the company name said the education division recorded revenue of US$548.2 million, compared with US$138.4 million for the newspaper division.
News in brief
New agency partner programme launched
ESL Traveler, an online booking platform for English language schools worldwide, has launched an Agent Partner programme. Agents will be able to sign in with ESL Traveler and receive an online booking and tracking service for ESL Travelers partner schools. Jivko Penthchov, President of ESL Traveler, said agents can start working immediately and will receive 15 per cent commission on any student that books online, and a further five-to-10 per cent for walk-in students.
Western Union opens China and Korea services
Western Union Company has launched global tuition payment services with Hana Bank, Korea, and ChinaPay and CITIC Bank in China to allow education fee payments to be made in those countries’ currencies, adding to a recent launch of Indian rupee payments. “I am delighted that we are able to support colleges and universities by ensuring quick and hassle-free payments for their international students,” said Kerry Agiasotis, Chief Commercial Officer.
Russia announces student growth plans
The Russian Ministry of Education hopes to increase the proportion of international students at its universities from 2.3 per cent currently to 10 per cent by 2018. It has announced that 15,000 budget-funded scholarships will be available, while potential students will also be able to take the university entrance exam in their home countries. Meanwhile, the Council on Russian Language has been established to promote the language and oversee a global network of centres providing free Russian tuition.
Education Wellington offers Ielts course
Education Wellington, New Zealand, has announced a partnership with Vital English www.vitalenglish.com to provide a free 30-hour online Ielts training course for students that may be interested in studying in Wellington.
New website for English UK
Language school association English UK has relaunched its website after a major overhaul. Weve redesigned the site from the bottom up, thinking about the way people use it, what they need to know and where they expect to find information, said Annie Wright, Deputy Chief Executive. She added that the new site would make it easier and quicker for students, members and agents to find what they are looking for.
Langports launches new app
English language school Langports, Australia, has unveiled a new iPhone app that allows students to check timetables, access activity programme schedules and register interest. The school has also launched an online store selling Langports merchandise, with all profits going to the Langports Foundation charitable organisation.
Stay Club partners with Skola
London-based accommodation provider The Stay Club has partnered with English language school Skola to offer programmes. Skola @ The Stay Academy is offered at the Camden residence, and James Herbertson, Sales manager of The Stay Club, said there was a demand for campus-based language courses in London and that the partnership would be providing high-end quality tuition with none of the distance to travel that many language school students face.
The Australian airline Qantas will boost the number of services flying to Asia, the USA and New Zealand this winter. On November 4, the existing Hong Kong to Sydney, Australia, route will become a five-times-weekly flight, and five per cent more seats will be added to this service per week. The carrier has increased its capacity to Hong Kong by 10 per cent so far this year, according to CEO Alan Joyce. Following this deployment, the Brisbane, Australia, to Los Angeles, USA, route will increase its frequency from six flights per week to daily on December 2. Additionally, trans-Tasman services will be bolstered as part of a joint venture with the UAE carrier Emirates, with a twice-weekly flight between Perth, Australia, and Auckland, New Zealand, operating from December 6 until February 1 2014. The existing Sydney to Christchurch, New Zealand, route, meanwhile, will be retimed to allow for more connections. “All of these network changes also boost the prospects of inbound tourism, particularly in an environment where the falling Australian dollar makes the country an even more attractive destination,” Joyce said.
Changi Airport Group in Singapore has unveiled plans for a new complex that will hopefully double the airport’s capacity by the mid-2020s. A mixture of aviation and travel related facilities, among other attractions, will be located at the site of the current Terminal 1 car park, while the terminal itself will also be expanded to allow more space for the arrival hall, taxi bays and baggage claim areas. This will help increase the airport’s capacity to 24 million per annum.
As of December this year, AirEuropa, the third largest airline in Spain, will fly indirectly from London Gatwick, UK, to Sao Pãulo, Brazil, via Madrid in Spain five times per week. The South American continent will be the seventh added to AirEuropa’s portfolio. Colin Stewart, UK General Manager for the operator, said, “The new route to Sao Pãulo underlines our commitment to connecting our UK leisure and business travellers with leading destinations in the region.”
A new airline is due to launch in Bali, Indonesia, that will service up to 20 international destinations including Malaysia, The Philippines and Singapore. Nam Air, a subsidiary of the Indonesia-based Sriwijaya Air, recently received a flight permit from the government and is in the process of obtaining other necessary certifications. “We are optimistic that this carrier will be able to start providing its service by the end of 2013,” said Chandra Lie, Chief Executive Officer of Sriwijaya Air.
Qatar Airways had ventured into Ethiopia, offering a three-times-weekly service to Addis Ababa from Doha. Chief Executive Officer, Akbar Al Baker, commented that Ethiopia is a fast-emerging country with a growing economic centre, forming strong trade links with Europe, USA and Asia Pacific. “There is clearly demand and huge potential to and from Ethiopia one of the many underserved markets across Africa.” Benghazi, Libya; Entebbe, Uganda; and Maputo, Mozambique are other African destinations recently added to the carrier’s portfolio within the last 24 months.
In other Qatar news, the airline has enhanced its baggage allowance per customer, affording economy travellers 30kg (an extra seven kilogrammes). The new weight allowance doesn’t apply when travelling to points regulated by a per-piece allowance. “Revising our standard baggage allowance comes at a time whereby the number of destinations we fly to is increasing,” said Chief Executive Officer, Akbar Al Baker.
Virgin Atlantic has upped its service connecting the UK capital of London to Cape Town, South Africa to a daily flight, having previously been a four-times weekly route with daily flights occurring during the peak seasons. Simon Newton-Smith, Virgin Atlantic General Manager for South Africa, said he is delighted. Meanwhile, Thulani Nzima, South African Tourism Chief Executive Officer, commented, “European markets are recovering well after the global recession. Virgin Atlantic’s increased capacity from London to Cape Town... is an indication of consumer confidence in our nation.”