Our latest blog is from Shonagh Maak who is the Internationalisation Manager at the University of Stirling. Shonagh is currently in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia attending Going Global 2o18, the leading international education conference. Seven Scottish higher education institutions are not only attending the conference but also meeting representatives from the Malaysian Government before moving onto Indonesia next week. Shonagh is going to try and blog for us daily whilst on the mission.
After a long day travelling, I arrive in Kuala Lumpur around 4pm – around 20 hours after I left Edinburgh. Thankfully the queue at immigration wasn’t too bad and, amazingly, neither was the traffic from the airport to the city centre so it doesn’t take too long to arrive at the hotel and get a hot shower and an early night before a busy week ahead. Although I am travelling alone, it seems the 20.15 flight from Heathrow was a popular choice and I meet colleagues from Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and St Andrews at the boarding gate.
Although I have been to Malaysia a number of times over the last few years to meet with prospective students and promote the range of degrees offered by the University of Stirling, this will be my first Going Global conference and I am excited to learn more about what new opportunities might exist between the Scottish and Malaysian HE sector. Scotland already has strong links with this exciting, multicultural country but as the sector continually changes, it’s important for us to explore new options. The UK is a popular choice for Malaysian students looking to study overseas but with increased competition from Australia, the USA and Europe, we need to make sure that we continue to promote the UK, especially Scotland as the partner of choice for both study and research.
This particular mission has a focus around Big Data, one of our most popular subjects at Stirling although the focus of the visit is to explore opportunities primarily as a collaborative sector. One of the things I enjoy most about working for a Scottish HEI is the cohesive approach we take and we regularly work together on both small and large projects to really promote the range of programmes and opportunities offered by the diverse range of universities in Scotland.
It’s a busy week ahead with a full schedule of meetings but I am exciting to spend time with colleagues and make new connections here in Malaysia.