2019 IFSA Conference
July 24-26, 2019
We live in an era of individualization. We, and our students, have unprecedented opportunities for self-expression through digital media, receive targeted content based on increasingly sophisticated algorithms that pinpoint our interests, and encourage one another with “you do you.” This emphasis on individuality highlights an age-old human reality: each student we serve has a rich internal life that shapes their interests and decisions. When we facilitate students’ pursuit of individually defined goals, research tells us they invest and achieve more than when we impose goals on them.
One-size-fits-all programming overlooks the power of student self-motivation. IFSA’s organizational commitment to Individualized Learning acknowledges that each student has unique goals and interests for their experience abroad, even when their profile may seem very similar to other participants. Our ability to surface and engage students around those interests allows us to help them be more purposeful with their time abroad. For some students, this is the first true mentorship they have experienced in their college careers. Best of all, a focus on the individual interests and needs of each student acts as a universal design principle: when we meet students where they are, we can meet their unique needs, whether they are a first-generation college student, a STEM major, or a student who is transitioning.
We are pleased to share downloadable resources from the 2019 IFSA Conference with you.