Leading with a global mindset
Our students are trained to live and work in an international world. Take the Dutch agricultural sector for example; After the US, we are the largest agricultural exporter in the world! In order to prepare everyone who takes part in our education, we have integrated an international focus within our studies.
We do not internatinalize our schools. We want our pupils and students to feel like they are part of a society that is both internationally oriented and multicultural; not just with the intent of preparing to work in an international company.
Read on to see how we put it into practice...
Final German exam... in Germany!
A bus full of pre-vocational secondary students traveled to the German city of Münster in December. There, they visited one of the many Christmas markets that Germany is full of during that time of year; not to do last minute Christmas shopping, but to interview the exhibitors! The conversations that the students had with these native speakers were a part of their German oral exam. An interactive and fun way to put their knowledge of the language into practice!
Clusius goes out into the world
Clusius College offers students of almost all courses (level 3 and 4) the opportunity to take an internship abroad. About 140 students annually use this so-called ibpv. The international bpv supervisor at the Clusius College helps the students to find a suitable country and internship company, when applying for a subsidy and for all other matters that come with internships abroad. During the internship, the supervisor is the contact person of the trainee and the internship company and she keeps an eye on whether the learning objectives of the students are addressed during the internship period.
An international internship is very rewarding to the students. They see experience how their field of study is practiced in a different culture. The largest amount of growth is done on a personal level. As soon as the student passes through customs, they are completely dependent on themselves; Something that many students have never experienced before. During the internship, they expand their own network and make friendships for life. Every year, the internship companies offer jobs to our students and there are even those who continue to travel or emigrate after their studies.
147 students completed an international internship in 2017. 107 students remained in Europe, 40 students traveled outside Europe. This year, a remarkable number of students traveled to new areas such as Costa Rica, Botswana and Chile. Many cattle farming students, who normally go mainly to Germany or Denmark, sought studies elsewhere in or outside Europe. Portugal recieved a large group of interns from this area of study.
Penpals in Africa
First-year students from Clusius College Schagen have pen pals in Réunion: a French island east of Madagascar. The first contact made by our students was oldschool: through good oldfashioned snail mail! For both groups of students, it is a good way to put their English reading and writing skills into practice. In addition, the French and Dutch students learn about each other's culture, their differences and their similarities.
Teacher Eva Visser was inspired by her students, who indicated that they would like to have pen friends to write in English. Through the online e-twinning community she discovered the possibility to make contact with other teachers and students in Europe. Through the platform, the participants can communicate with each other, collaborate, develop and share projects. One of the existing projects that Eva joined was the "Penpal exchange".
The world is coming to Clusius
In the ClusiusLab, we have recieved visitors, teachers, and students from around the world! Annually, some groups from abroad are received here. Nowadays, these are often groups from Asia. These groups receive a presentation, regularly supplemented with practical examples by students of the Clusius College. Groups from abroad also come to visit outside the ClusiusLab.
For example, Heerhugowaard has an exchange project every year with a school in Poland, where the Dutch students first visit Poland and later in the year the Polish students come to Clusius College. Also in 2017, a delegation of farmers from Tomsk (Western Siberia) came to the Clusius College Alkmaar to see part of the cheese making process.
So many people, so many flavors
Getting to embrace cultures that are different than yours? The second-graders of the VMBO's location at the Clusius College in Purmerend were able to do so during the 'multiculti' project week. Every day the students became aquainted with a different culture. By the end of the week, they had gotten a lesson in belly dancing and even learned how to play djembé. The project week was concluded with a culinary market. In the various market stalls the students presented in groups a country and its (culinary) traditions.