Creating opportunities for meaningful inter-cultural experiences is more important than ever. We are excited to announce that this year’s ACU Summer School, ‘The Migration generation? Climate, youth and refugees' will be delivered virtually with University of Cape Coast (UCC), Ghana, from 3-14 August.
As part of ACU Digital Now, the Summer School will virtually connect students from across the Commonwealth to examine global challenges and be part of an international classroom from afar. ACU Digital Now is an ongoing project around innovative approaches for enhancing virtual engagement across our membership.
Despite the challenges, damage and loss of the pandemic, our members have responded with trademark resourcefulness and creativity. In turn, the ACU and UCC look forward to bringing together talented students this summer, whilst safeguarding their health and wellbeing during this global health emergency.
Students will share their knowledge and experiences of migration, work on a challenging group project, learn from expert speakers and virtually immerse themselves in Ghanaian culture and history. Lectures and group project work will explore themes linked to migration including climate change, youth labour market participation, social media, health, and intergovernmental partnerships.
This year’s Summer School programme has been creatively adapted to nurture opportunities for connecting, networking and socialising at a distance. Students will connect through virtual social events, culture sharing sessions, and online group work. Virtual break-out rooms will provide students with real-time interaction with fellow delegates - helping them forge meaningful interactions from across the globe. Students will also be joined by a host of international expert speakers from the ACU’s diverse network, including UCC’s subject specialists, to deliver panel discussions and lectures.
As one of this year’s speakers, Jo Vearey, Associate Professor & Director, African Centre for Migration & Society, University of the Witwatersrand, South Africa, added: "Now, more than ever in the context of Covid-19, we need to ensure that the associations between migration and health need to be better understood in order to improve the development and delivery of appropriate interventions. Whilst a move to virtual learning means that we lose out on the face-to-face interactions that are so important, I am confident that we will find ways to support online discussion and group interactions in ways that - in line with the principles of the ACU summer school - are accessible to all."
The ACU Summer School launched in 2011 and is hosted by a different ACU member institution each year. Previous summer schools have been held in Rwanda, Canada and Hong Kong, covering themes such as the Sustainable Development Goals, urban studies, and the environmental humanities.
The Summer School is open to postgraduate and final-year undergraduate students from Commonwealth universities. Each year, approximately 50% of participants are awarded competitive ACU-funded bursaries, which are targeted at students from member universities who have not previously had the opportunity to travel overseas.