Joined partnership in academics

By Shanna O’Mara

Just months after finalizing transfer agreements with Mercer County, Bucks County and Brookdale community colleges, Rider looks forward to enhancing bonds with universities overseas and international students interested in continuing their education in the United States.

The university is now collaborating with King’s College in London. The two schools will work together to provide students from many countries the opportunity to improve their English and to experience American college life in Lawrenceville.

“By partnering in this endeavor, King’s increases its ability to recruit students to a program ideally located between Philadelphia and New York,” said Mike Reca, associate vice president of facilities.

However, this is not a traditional exchange program. The agreement is independent from Rider’s academic degree programs, although students who complete the English training program through King’s may decide to pursue a degree at Rider just as any other undergraduate student would.

In order to be recruited to enroll in a degree program at Rider, King’s students must first fit the university’s standards in regards to English language skills. Foreign students apply and are accepted to the language instruction program operated at Rider by King’s College. Meanwhile, Rider’s Auxiliary Services Department acts as their “campus liaison” to help them navigate various elements on campus, including residence life, dining services and extracurricular activities, Reca said.

“King’s and Rider are both well-respected programs in the international community,” Reca said.

So it was an easy decision to make after King’s College initially approached Rider about such an agreement.

Several campus departments collaborated with King’s College to form this agreement, including Rider’s Residence Life, Auxiliary Services, the Office of Information Technology and Student Finance Services.

Rider staff is enthusiastic about welcoming the newcomers from around the world and is confident that American students will also gain a knowledge of a different culture from the exchange students.

“Rider benefits from an increased ability to attract prospective international degree-seeking students,” Reca said. “International students enrich our campus culture.”

Although no additional transfer agreements are on the horizon, “Enrollment Management, the International Office and the Academic Colleges are open to additional international agreements that benefit our students,” Reca said.

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