In all, 65 nominees have made the shortlist – 26 in Europe, 13 from North America, 10 from Australasia, seven in Asia, and one each from the Middle East and Africa.
A key trend in innovation this year was seen in initiatives aimed at helping students gain an advantage in the jobs market, with finalists in the Public-Private Partnership category, Progressive Education Delivery, Digital Innovation (Learning) and Student Support award category shortlisted for relevant jobs or careers initiatives.
Many of this year’s entries attest to strong cross-border, collaborative partnerships. A combined entry from Begin Group in Russia and the Philippines Department of Tourism stood out for its targeted promotion of study opportunities in the Philippines for students in Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.
Blyth Education in Canada is shortlisted for its work with Tsinghua University/TUS Education in China, and likewise, the Torch Innovation Precinct at UNSW in Australia was selected as a finalist; this is a research partnership between the Ministry of Science & Technology China and UNSW.
Various finalists are being recognised for success on social causes. NOKUT/Norwegian ENIC-NARIC and Canada-based, Daughters For Life Foundation have been nominated for the flagship PIEoneer of the Year award.
All the contenders for the Championing Diversity category boast outstanding work on making international education more diverse.
This category features work from Miami-Dade College in the US, which entered with an initiative aiming to promote study abroad opportunities to homeless and foster students, for example, alongside fellow US contender, Fund for Education Abroad, USA for its Bringing the world home campaign.
They are joined by the UK’s Common Purpose and Canadian educator ILAC which has championed scholarships for Syrian women.
Three individuals have been recognised this year for their Outstanding Contribution to the industry.
President and CEO of IES Abroad, Mary Dwyer, who has championed experiences abroad for 22 years; executive director of the burgeoning Groningen Declaration Network, Herman de Leeuw, working to make academic credentials portable and secure; and Anthony Manning, dean for internationalisation at the University of Kent – whose work in English for academic skills training and as a founder of the University Pathways Alliance was commended – beat other fantastic nominations in the category.
Due to popular demand and a high number of nominations, The PIE has subdivided the Digital Innovation category into two – one for learning and technology, each with four nominees.
For the ‘learning’ section of the award the Open University, UK has been recognised for its Teacher Education in Sub-Saharan Africa MOOC on FutureLearn; the University of the West of Scotland School of Business & Enterprise for its Pioneering Immersive Education with a Digital Heartbeat project; plus GlobalMe School from the US and Chasing Time English from New Zealand also feature.
The ‘technology’ section features entries from StudyPortals, Unizest, Unibuddy and International Education Connect.
“Two Dutch entries made the shortlist for accommodation provider prize”
The PIE team introduced two new categories for 2018 – language educator of the year and the real life learning awards.
The Language Educator of the year award proved to be a welcome introduction, attracting a high calibre of nominees. British Study Centres, UK, Malaca Instituto, Spain, Australian Centre for Education, Cambodia and CIEE Global Navigator High School Summer Abroad, USA have all made it on to the shortlist.
The Real Life Learning award has five finalists, featuring Swinburne University of Technology for its IT for Social Impact India project and Embassy English for its English in Action project. RMIT Training in Australia, CRCC Asia and Professionals UK have all been recognised for their innovative internship programs.
RMIT Training also aims to help international students enter the workplace. It aims to give students experience in the Australian work place and a stepping stone to further work opportunities in and around Melbourne.
“The international alumni of the year finalists are from Vietnam, India, China and the US”
European associations dominate the association of the year award with Eaquals and Erasmus Student Network both submitting strong entries. BUILA from the UK is another finalist along with SIEBA in New Zealand.
Nominees will have to wait until September 7 when winners will be announced at the annual PIEoneer Awards ceremony in central London.
The complete shortlist is available here. To make sure you join The PIE for the occasion of the year, book your tickets now.