Partnership launched to increase international recruitment at UAB

With significant implications to its student enrollment and economic impact in the region, UAB’s partnership with INTO University Partnerships will increase access for international students to one of the nation’s most diverse college campuses.

INTOJohn Sykes, left, and Ray WattsThe University of Alabama at Birmingham announced today that INTO University Partnerships will help lead its efforts to increase access for international students to its globally ranked campus.

“We are incredibly pleased to announce this partnership,” said UAB President Ray L. Watts. “It is a key step in growing our economic impact in the region and a step forward in our initiative to bring the world to UAB. We are proud to be one of the most diverse college campuses in the U.S.”    

Ranked a Top 200 Best Global University by U.S. News & World Report, UAB is home to one of the largest academic medical centers in the U.S. and welcomes students, faculty and staff from more than 100 countries. The Center for World University Rankings lists UAB as No. 146 internationally and No. 70 in the U.S. in the quality of education and training of students as well as the prestige of the faculty members and the quality of research.

“Our students, faculty and staff exhibit a relentless dedication to improving our global society,” said UAB Provost Linda Lucas, Ph.D. “This new partnership will further strengthen our ability to internationalize this campus to the benefit of the UAB community and beyond.”

UAB becomes the eighth university in the U.S. to partner with INTO, a private global educational company working with 22 leading universities across the world to expand opportunities for higher education, ensuring international student success and achieving globally diverse and integrated campus communities. By the fifth year of the partnership, it is estimate that more than 700 international students will have enrolled through the new joint venture. UAB will be able to accommodate this level of enrollment growth, and no qualified Alabama resident will be denied admission to UAB as a result of this international recruitment emphasis.

“This new partnership will further strengthen our ability to internationalize this campus to the benefit of the UAB community and beyond.”

“Education has the power to transform lives — and there is no better place than UAB to see that transformation happen each and every day,” said John Sykes, co-founder and CEO of INTO University Partnerships. “This partnership will bring additional vital global perspectives to the UAB campus and will bring significant benefits to the wider community in terms of new jobs, access to global talent, and new experiences for students and faculty alike.”

The joint venture will create a separate entity called INTO the University of Alabama at Birmingham, which will be managed by a board of directors that includes leaders from both organizations. Working together, UAB and INTO will develop academic pathway programs for international students to improve their English language comprehension while preparing them to be successful, degree-seeking students at UAB.

Pathway programs are uniquely designed for international students to continue the development of their English skills while completing first-year coursework that will count toward the completion of their UAB degree. Students in these programs benefit from an inclusive university community, with direct access to campus resources and UAB’s faculty-led courses.

“UAB is an internationally renowned research university with a remarkable commitment to student success,” said Mary Jane Miller, chief operating officer for INTO North America. “We are excited to bring greater awareness of such an outstanding institution to more students worldwide.”

With this agreement, UAB joins a growing U.S. network, including Oregon State University, University of South Florida, Colorado State University, Marshall University, George Mason University, Drew University and Saint Louis University, which announced its partnership with INTO in September 2015.