Student Risk in Study Abroad

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Student Risk in Study Abroad
Dealing with Risk in Study Abroad
The Value of the Safety Net
Peter Hough
Senior International Officer
A delicate balancing act
REWARDS
RISKS
Image courtesy of Jennifer Huber via Creative Commons [CC BY-SA 2.0] http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0
Balancing the
rewards
• Increased confidence
• Independence
• Problem-solving
• Language skills
• Employability / CV
• Global network
• Different academic
perspective
REWARDS
Balancing
the risks
• Unfamiliar
surroundings
• Differing infrastructure
RISKS
• Medical emergencies
• Culture shock
• Natural disasters
• Terrorism
• Isolation
• “The Invisible
Invincibility Cloak”
Experienced?
Over-confident?
Invincible?
Compulsive risk taker?
Image courtesy of José Manuel Ríos Valiente via Flickr [CC BY-SA 2.0] https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/legalcode
Why is this ‘okay’ abroad?
Experienced?
Over-confident?
Invincible?
Compulsive risk taker?
Student submission, anonymised
THE article by Ellie Bothwell, 22 January 2016:
[ www.timeshighereducation.com/news/us-students-take-more-risks-while-studying-abroad
30%
admitted lying to their parents about their
activities while studying abroad
11%
tried an illegal drug for the first time
29%
used illegal drugs abroad
32%
engaged in romantic encounters with
strangers abroad
20%
accepted a car ride from a local stranger
(not a taxi/Uber driver)
11%
detained by law enforcement while
studying abroad
Statistics taken from On Call Travel Management survey results, cited in THE article by Ellie Bothwell, 22 January 2016:
www.timeshighereducation.com/news/us-students-take-more-risks-while-studying-abroad
Who provides the the safety net?
• Existing friends and
family
• Peers and new
social group
• Study Abroad Office
• University Support
Services
Image courtesy of Andrew Skudder via Flickr [CC BY-SA 2.0] https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/legalcode
Resources
Foreign & Commonwealth
Office Travel Advice pages
• Overview of known risks and
travel recommendations
• Regularly updated with advice
on threats to health, security
and safety in 225 countries
https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice
Resources
Red24 Risk Management
(among others!)
• Subscription-based services
including daily digest of
incidents worldwide
• Security Briefings: background,
analysis and recommendations
• Your Insurance Office may
have institutional subscription
https://www.red24.com/
Resources
UKCISA’s “International
Students in Crisis” Guide
• Factors common to different
types of crisis and impact on
international students
• Specific types of crisis: illness,
death, crime and events in the
student's home country
• Practical resources, checklists,
models of good practice, useful
publications and contacts
(Currently being revised and
updated for republication in 2016)
http://institutions.ukcisa.org.uk//Info-for-universities-colleges--schools/Publications--research/resources/20/International-students-in-crisis
Resources
British Council’s
‘Creating Confidence’ Guide
• Helps students prepare for their
stay in the UK
• Practical advice about living
and studying in the UK
• Highlights safety and security
issues and lists organisations to
contact if they need help
Download via:
http://www.educationuk.org/global/articles/safety/
Resources
Safe Zone app
(among others!)
• Safety reassurance for staff
and students
• Allows users to send
emergency, first aid and
general help alerts
• Targeted notifications in the
event of an incident on campus
http://www.safezoneapp.com/
Building confidence to deal with the risks
• Acknowledge that your students are
adults with their own minds
• Remember that young adults can
and do make mistakes / bad choices
• Identify unacceptable and avoidable
risks and protect students
• Allow students to take some
calculated risks and build resilience
• Get to know your partners and
ensure there is adequate support at
home and abroad
Peter Hough
University of Leicester
Email:
Phone:
[email protected]
+44 116 252 2608

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