Amphi de Positionnement is an annual event which aims at allocating GEM students for their dreaming destination in terms of academic exchange. This year, Amphi de Positionnement took place in the Auditorium on Thursday, Feb 5, 2015. It had over 500 students attend this allocation meeting and make the choice live according to their ranking. Even though it was a half-day event, the preparation had been started earlier in the summer in the Center for International Affairs with coordination of Academic Advisors and Administrative staffs.
Dated back to the year of 2014, more than 500 students participated in the Amphi de Positionnement and 404 students successfully got their dreaming destinations for academic exchange overseas.
The most popular destinations for the exchange program were China, United Kingdom, Spain, Canada, Mexico, Germany, Sweden, United States and Ireland, etc.
Per Mark Thomas, Associate Dean & Director of Center for International Affairs, “In fact, United States is traditionally the most popular country. Four years ago, China takes over. The way how the students choose their academic exchange overseas is linked to the economic activity. Our job is to prepare them for the business activity internationally. The development in China in the past years makes it the second largest world economics with an increasing number of China international companies. As a result, more and more people talk about it, work there, study there. The students want to get experience like that. Canada is always popular for French students. It is because it is the European North America. It is a hybrid with American working style and Europe culture. United States is the world’s largest economic. United Kingdom, Spain, and Germany are for linguistic reasons to improve their second foreign languages. ”
For the Amphi de Positionnement itself, it is a fair and transparent process in terms of how the students are prepared for the allocation event and how the information is distributed.
“After receiving all the application and verifying all the necessary documents, the criteria of ranking and the result of ranking will be sent to each student by email respectively” said Ombeline Brechignac, the outgoing officer of Center for International Affairs. “The students know which criteria will be applied and their individual ranking before the allocation event. It facilitates them to better prepare before the event.” During the Amphi de Positionnement, students are called one by one based on their ranking to choose the ideal destinations. “What we aim to do is to allocate students to the right places which they want to go to according to their ability, language skills and the type of courses they want to take. To achieve the goal, we have a ranking system which is to ensure we have a fair and transparent system that everyone understands. As far as I know, we are the only school in the world that conducts the allocation procedure in such an open and transparent way. Most schools do it in the office and send the result to the students afterwards. But we do it in front of the students” said Mark.
In the Auditorium, the process is to go down the ranking list and offer the places for the students to choose. Sometimes it worries students. “To get there, there is a huge amount of work to be done. We need to provide precise information and make zero mistakes.”
A large part of preparation is invisible and effort-taking. “Started earlier in the summer, we needed to update all the documents for the students. This process collaborates with Academic team and Administrative staff as well. The students can look into the International Course Catalogue which is prepared by the Academic Advisors and the Administrative staff. All the information is updated in the ESC site as well. It is about what the students can expect from the partner university, what kind of academic exchange program they can make (a double degree, a semester exchange, or transcontinental program, etc)”. Per Joelle Silvestre, Head of Exchange Programs, “we need to be very cautious, make no mistake. Otherwise, we will jeopardize someone’s academic exchange.”
“We also need to collect documents from the students. To go abroad, the students need to take language test and have certificate of a second language. There is a lot of verification for those files. In January, we have spent two whole weeks to verify all the documents, such as GMAT, IELTS, and TOELF to see if the students meet the requirements of the partner university. The other part of the job which won’t be noticed is to work with each partner university, such as to settle the number of places for exchange or negotiate the contracts. We also do a lot of communication for the students by the communication office. During the Enrollment Campaign, we have sent at least one message per week. Each time, the messages need to be very accurate in terms of administrative procedure, language requirement and so forth. We explain bit by bit, point by point.”
“The students shouldn’t stress that much. They will have 10 options out of 125 partners. I believe that no matter what the choice the students have made, they have thought about it wisely. Best wishes for all” said Joelle.