RMIT’s global leadership programs have been shortlisted for an Australian Financial Review Higher Education Award.
RMIT’s vast international presence allows it to deliver unique global experiences, designed to develop leadership and cultural intelligence skills.
But not everyone can travel, so RMIT in partnership with British not-for-profit leadership development organisation, Common Purpose, runs an innovative series of global leadership programs, giving every student the opportunity to access free global experiences going abroad.
Those offerings have been recognised in the upcoming Australian Financial Review Higher Education Awards, shortlisted in the International Education category.
The winners will be announced at a ceremony in Melbourne on 28 August.
Manager Global Experiences Kate Rintoul said the programs give students new perspectives.
“Our students live and work in an increasingly globalised environment wherever their future takes them,” she said.
“That’s why it’s important to have accessible global programs, letting students reap the benefits of global learning without leaving campus.”
RMIT runs five global leadership programs.
Global Leader Experience
Designed and delivered in collaboration with partner Common Purpose, students are given practical and industry exposure while working in diverse teams to tackle a global challenge.
The program culminates in students pitching their solution to a panel of industry experts. Students get four RMIT Creds – a new and innovative suite of industry-relevant digital credentials – on completion.
Online learning module: Be CQ Ready
The free two-week module helps students develop their understanding of cultural intelligence and discover a deeper self-awareness through uncovering cultural influences and their impact on behaviour.
Students who successfully complete the module gain the RMIT Cred Building Cultural Intelligence.
Over two days, 500 RMIT students and alumni tackle a major challenge set by senior leaders of their city.
At the same time, they will develop their ability to thrive in complex situations and lead diverse groups to innovative solutions.
The City Challenge is run in several cities throughout the year, including Melbourne, Singapore and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.
Industry leaders address students in an engaging forum. Students refine their concept of leadership and identify the skills and attributes required to help determine their own personal leadership journey, both now and in the future.
Students have the opportunity to gain the RMIT Cred Innovation for Global Cities.
These one-day workshops are designed to help students explore their leadership and cultural intelligence skills at a deeper level.
Leading beyond authority and exploring how cultural experiences have created impact become major themes.
Since the programs launched in 2017, a diverse cross-section of more than 1,000 students from 60 countries have enrolled – applicants now far outnumber available places.
Diploma of Community Services student Menura Mudalige, who participated in the Global Leader Experience three months after arriving in Australia, said it was a life-changing experience.
“I grew so much as a leader, and learned so much about making a difference in this world,” Mudalige said.
Bachelor of Technology student Athanasios Papaharisis said the Be CQ Ready module has helped prepare him for teaching overseas.
"This program has given me a large chunk of confidence towards understanding how to properly respect and understand cultural differences and my own core,” he said.
Bachelor of Design (Communication Design) and Diploma of Languages student Tristan Danino said the Global Leadership Experience was “one of the best experiences” of his university life.
“I met so many different, diverse, and unique people, none of whom I would have met otherwise, all with different opinions and perspectives,” Danino said.
“They opened my eyes to the diversity at RMIT, far beyond my own program, and pushed me to learn more about myself and my background, employing the all-important cultural intelligence to navigate interactions sensitively.”
More than 90 per cent of participants said the global leadership programs facilitated the development of their cultural intelligence, networks, collaboration and leadership skills.
Story: Aeden Ratcliffe