Internationalize Your Degree at York

Posted by York & U on December 19, 2011

Features | Get In The Know

one of the many luminato displays in downtown Toronto

At this point, most of us have heard the term “global village.” It refers to the whole world being one community linked by communication networks, but those details are irrelevant here. The point is that the world is an increasingly interlinked place with many unique cultures and perspectives. For you, prospective students, this means that you need to gain a broad understanding of the world around you in order to be as successful as possible in your career. This might be a bit daunting, but don’t worry – York has you covered.

There are a few ways you can “internationalize” your degree, as we like to refer to it. The most obvious of these is the international Bachelor of Arts (iBA) or international Bachelor of Science (iBSc) degrees. International undergraduate degrees require students to study at least one language aside from English and to go on at least one semester-long exchange at one of our partner institutions. Not only does an iBA or iBSc look impressive on your resume, but it offers you a wide perspective on the world around you. Being bi- or trilingual also enables you to gain experiences and have opportunities that you would not otherwise be able to receive. International degrees are offered through Glendon, the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies and the Faculty of Science & Engineering.

If you aren’t interested in committing to both a second language and an exchange, you’re more than welcome to stick to your BA, BSc, BASc or BFA. Anyone is able to study a second language at York, and we encourage you to do so. Learning a language often includes gaining insight into the culture behind that language. It also improves your cognitive abilities and employability.

York also offers a number of exchanges to locations worldwide to eligible students. Each year, York students attend universities in anywhere from Australia to Guyana to Turkey, and just about everywhere in between. Credits earned while on exchange go towards your degree, but your grades at the exchange university will not be used when calculating your grade point average (GPA). Exchanges are an excellent way to learn independence and see a part of the world that you may not otherwise have the opportunity to visit.

York also helps you internationalize your education outside of the classroom. There are over 300 clubs and organizations at York, and many of these are cultural groups. Even if you aren’t from the culture of a given club or organization, you are welcome to join, attend events and participate in activities. Although this might not be as far-reaching as an exchange, joining the club or organization will allow you some perspective into that culture.

If you’re interested in living in residence, Global House at Pond Residence is another great opportunity to internationalize your education. Global House consists of two floors of Pond Residence and is full of both Canadian and international students. These students participate in a variety of activities aimed at developing personal leadership skills, forging connections with other students from around the world and developing skills for life in a diverse society. The activities Global House residents participate in are largely social and discussion based with attention paid to international issues and interpersonal relationships.

York knows that our world is increasingly multicultural and diverse, and works to prepare you for life in this society. From degrees to programs and exchanges to clubs and residences, York is here to help you internationalize your degree. Check out our Future Students website for more information.