There were a few topics that sparked my interest in this weeks reading. The first was harmonization. As we spoke in class and in the blog, countries are currently having problems uniting themselves to in fact wish for a national harmonization is very difficult. The harmonization they spoke about was in regards to international academic calendars and degree/credit transfers. With my position as an admissions counselor I constantly see students with international credits and degrees and many times we do not accept all credits or the degrees they received do not allow them to continue a masters or doctorate here. There are even times where the high school diploma is not sufficient and we will ask them to take a GED. I do believe the education hubs play a role in this. Some mentioned there education hubs were cities like in Ecuador with the Yachay City of Knowledge and others were schoolhouses within institutions like Singapore. With an eventual minimum qualification for what is considered high school equivalent and bachelors equivalent the harmonization could be a possibility for students to not loose years in university when transferring between countries. On the policy side, many students who come to New York with a degree are not able to receive the PELL or TAP grants because it is for those students seeking degree for the first time. This information is available to international students but is not well known and normally these students find out at the bursars office after they have been accepted and registered for classes.

It has always been know that the United States is a “melting pot” for different cultures but when it comes to higher education we are the only one’s with HBCU’s and Hispanic-serving institutions. When speaking about policy the U.S. really emphasizes that the wish to bring internationalization to these institutions but all the other countries mention policies they wish to implement across the board. I wonder how HBCU;s and Hispanic-serving institutions will play a role in the internationalizing of education and if it will thrive in institutions like this where the majority of the students have roots that are international already. Are we really the only country that has certain institutions that are under served? Or are we the only ones who care?

Lastly, policy effectiveness relies heavily on institutional research. With the correct collection of data and analysis policy can be most effective, but funding as mentioned in the article is a problem for some countries. In order to collect the correct data and have the tools to analyze and asses within the years to come if the policy is effective will take large amounts of monetary funds. Being in compliance with state and government regulations too can hinder policy, so even if the institution wishes to move towards internationalization they are unable to. This brings up the point of safety with internationalization, are we brining in danger with opening our doors to institutions around the world?


6 thoughts on “W-3 Melissa Fernandez

  1. Melissa ,
    I think your post provides some great information on the readings. I particularly like the point on harmonization. I also mention in my blog post that this is currently an issue. Schools are trying to internationalize however the basic parts such as credit transfers are not applicable.
    Furthermore the funding aspect is also a great deal for students, as readings mentioned there are funding opportunities and grants for research , but I doubt it mentions availability for general student population, who may want to expand their skills further by studying abroad. This just further shoes that issues in main interests of policy makers are are praised and funds are given only a small percentage of topics .

  2. Hi Melissa,
    I agree with all of your points regarding harmonization. I also thought about the financial part of harmonization, which for many international students is hard to understand. In my position I also constantly see students with international credits and degrees that are not applicable to a program in our college, but accepted as a “Prior BA”. Regardless of this, because of their legal status they are only eligible for private student loans. I think overall the U.S system makes it very hard for international students to pay their private student loan debt. It is unfair to accept a degree/credits, not apply them to their current program and also, not guarantee a legal status that will assist in employment and paying their student loan debt. Even though most universities with high international student enrollment have an officer to guide student, it seems like using outside sources like the link below is what students really need to research for. The below link list most school that grant scholarships.

  3. Hello Melissa,

    Thank you for your post! I appreciate you considering how internalization will effect Historically Black Colleges and Universities, as well as Hispanic serving institutions. These are institutions that are already encountering financial issues because they receive less funding and try to serve a student body that generally finds it diffucult being admitted into wealthier, prestigious institutions. Although these students have roots that may be internationally based, the opportunity for them to study abroad will still put them at a disadvantage. For example, take a student whose family originated from Haiti, but the student was born in America and only visited Haiti once or twice for a week or two in his/her lifetime. An American born Haitian student attending NYU might have the ability to travel to two different countries for two semesters and learn a third language, making him/her more competitive for the workforce upon graduation. I think we also need to consider students attending religious affiliated institutions or an all female institution. I believe they would also lack the chance to participate in internationalization because it might be against their beliefs and values.


    1. (Responding to Adia’s comment) Your mention of religious institutions and internationalization is something to think about! At my institution, I have seen many credentials from international students who attended Catholic universities, mostly in East Asia and South America. Such institutions would seem to have a unique advantage, with the religions they are affiliated with already being global in nature. A domestic Catholic institution could be involved with study abroad/ dual degree programs with Catholic institutions abroad, being able to collaborate with those who share their institutional mission. Does this actually happen? Locally, Fordham University has an extensive study abroad program. They do have programs with Catholic institutions in the Dominican Republic, Brazil and Italy, but the majority are with secular universities. Still, it would appear that faith based institutions may have unique opportunities to internationalize.

      Allison Olly

      Fordham resource:

  4. Hi Melissa,

    Thank you for your post. You bring up a lot of good points, but the topic that interested me most was the lack of diversity in international education. I recently came across an article named “Fulbright Seeks More Diverse Pool of Scholars and Students” ( in the Chronicle of Higher Education. The article talks about how underrepresented populations often do not know about the Fulbright program or do not think it would be a good fit for them. The State Department has focused on attracting not only more racially diverse participants, but also women and people with disabilities. Despite some developments regarding diversity, there is still much room for improvement. The article notes that the State Department is looking at increased communication with minority serving institutions as well as having alumni ambassadors of color promote the program to interested students.


  5. Hi Melissa,
    The fear of losing credits is major one for students within the US. I can only imagine what it’s like for students looking to pursue higher education here in the US from an outside country. While it is great to have standards and regulations, the disparity between the US and other countries is disheartening. Imagine working hard for your high school diploma in your home country, moving here to start college, only to be told we it’s not enough, or the reverse of going aboard to take courses and having to do 2x the work because that country’s requirements doesn’t quite add up to the US’s. For me, personally, it’s one of the reasons I choose not to transfer out of my undergrad.
    You point about HBCU’s and Hispanic-serving institutions having students who are rooted internationally already is exactly why I believe these types of institutions would thrive in the internationalization market. These institutions where born because the people had no spaces of their own and wanted to be around like minded people, they understand the need and importance of being able to be well versed in many different areas because they live in it on a day to day in their current lives.

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