Education is a fast-growing sector and the UK’s Coventry University has chosen Wroclaw to establish the first foreign university in Poland, delegates heard at the recent CEE Summit in Warsaw, which was organised by Poland Today and Real Asset Media.
‘We see ourselves as a global institution and we have hubs in the Middle East, Africa, South America and the Far East, but we had never had anything in mainland Europe before,’ said John Dishman, Pro-Vice Chancellor, Coventry University. ‘Brexit has prompted us to move faster. We have looked at several countries in Europe but we have chosen Poland’.
Out of eight cities the University looked at in Poland,Wroclaw was chosen for two reasons, he said: ‘The city welcomed us because it has such great ambition for the sector and there is a shortage of graduate labour to meet the needs of local companies’.
English language education is highly prized in Poland and employers are eager to engage in curriculum development to steer the content of courses to meet their needs, Dishman said: ‘There is strong demand for work-ready graduate labour because Wroclaw has a reputation as a university city and it has been very successful in attracting large foreign investment’.
The new fully operational campus will open in the Autumn of 2020 and will offer UK qualifications with year-round multiple start dates and a mix of British and Polish academics doing the teaching. Initially it will offer degrees in Aviation, Business, Digital and Cybersecurity, in response to local companies’ needs, while the companies will offer students internships and work experience.
‘Later on we plan to add MBAs and other post-graduate qualifications,’ he said. ‘We hope to encourage other universities to be more flexible and employer-friendly and we hope to attract students not just from nearby countries but also from China and the Far East. The cost of living is much lower in Poland than in the UK and there is also a friendlier environment to international students’.
The fees of 20,000 zloty per year are high by Polish standards but, as Dishman pointed out, ‘less than half the cost of British University courses’.
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