International Students: Towards Global Citizenship, Towards New Perspectives on Global Student Mobility
In this final chapter, the authors present a concluding argument emerging from some of the experiences of the Welcome to Wollongong project, and the other research projects in Asia and Australia presented in this book, on how to resituate and reposition international students as important people in establishing a conscious move towards global citizenship. This conclusion argues that this will require a shift in thinking to re-define the notion of risk and to see students as an active opportunity for an optimistic engagement with a global community. This chapter puts forwards some propositions for future action for international students including a global charter for international education codifying the responsibilities of governments and universities to students in transnational higher education. It also proposes a different perspective of internationalisation in higher education that promotes the practice of international institutional partnership as an alternative to the transnational market. This emphasis on collaboration challenges both the competitive orientation of the global arrangements in transnational education and its capacity to reproduce a postcolonial hegemony. In conclusion, the authors suggest that the need for any alternative paradigm to explore mobility to incorporate strong commitments to a holistic wellness paradigm where the welfare and health of international students are at the core of global student mobility rather than seeing them as disembodied units of production. The authors propose that new key structural and legal interventions are needed by host institutions, sending countries and governments to ensure that student mobility is no longer a risky business but is a positive global interaction, engagement, cooperation and exchange.