If you could spend five minutes with anyone from the international education sector, who would it be and what would you ask them? Introducing The PIE’s latest series, Five Minutes With… where we speak to leaders from across the sector and ask them all the big questions.
Tereza Reed runs international admissions in a pretty unique setting. The DAVE School – or the Digital Animations and Visual Effects School – offers diplomas and degrees in animation, visual production and more. As an added bonus, it’s situated right in the middle of Universal Studios, Orlando. Tereza tells us about her 28-year career in international education.
If you had a magic wand, what would you change?
I would amplify the internationalisation endeavours of not just my own, but all educational institutions, revolutionising the efficiency and accessibility of admissions processes and student services for global learners. I’d also want to establish comprehensive support systems to foster their transition and of course, enrich academic experiences.
What was your first job in international education?
I spearheaded a Florida university’s internationalisation process, creating and managing an ESL program. It resulted in big student population growth, the establishment of TESOL conferences and the development of short-term programs for immersive summer experiences. I also provided training to admissions and education teams for effective promotion and assessment, as well as training the faculty team.
Best work trip?
One of my most memorable trips was a life-changing journey to Japan, Korea, and the Middle East. I made valuable connections and gained profound insights into diverse cultural perspectives I’d not previously encountered. Ultimately, it really expanded my global outlook and crucially, reinforced the significance of international collaboration in education in my worldview.
What’s the biggest challenge to your profession?
A key challenge people in my profession face, including me, is successfully navigating the landscape of immigration policies and visa regulations for our students. It requires constant adaptation and compliance. This goes hand in hand with the challenge of addressing cultural barriers and providing comprehensive support systems to international students – their needs really are unique.
“I would amplify the internationalisation endeavours of not just my own, but all educational institutions”
Who’s a champion or cheerleader in the industry which we should all follow and why?
Rahul Choudaha really stands out as a champion and role model in our field for me. He’s renowned for his expertise as a strategist and researcher, particularly in the areas of global student mobility, student recruitment, and the profound societal and economic impact of international education.
What is the best international education conference and why?
NAFSA has to be the best. This year’s conference in Washington DC really was a transformative gathering that energised all of us who went. It’s events like these where professionals can really be empowered to shape the future of international education. There are always inspiring sessions, networking opportunities, and a real focus on inclusivity and fostering innovation. It leaves a lasting impact on the pursuit of diversity and just shows that there are limitless possibilities in the field.
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