forward together

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s Global Strategy Committee created Forward Together: A Global Strategy to expand the university's reach and impact on international students. 

Forward Together will act as a plan for the university as it expands its global reach by engaging with more foreign affairs and will help benefit students in a variety of ways to better global engagement. 

According to Josh Davis, associate vice chancellor for Global Affairs and co-chair of the Global Strategy Committee, within the goals that are set, the committee hopes to improve tuition support for international students, establish a global experience office, increase professional development opportunities and elevate the “Global Nebraska” brand. 

The committee is in the process of implementing its plan this spring and beginning its initiative. 

The Global Strategy Committee has granted over 20 Global Experiences Innovation Fund grants to help develop opportunities for students to engage with global communities, said Cody Hollist, associate professor of child, youth and family studies and a co-chair of the Global Strategy Committee, in an email.

“As Chancellor Green talked about in his State of Our University address, our goal is to enable each student to have a global experience while at UNL,” Hollist said. “That does not only mean travel abroad, it ultimately means each student personally impacted by their interaction with a global community, especially in the sphere of their field of study.”  

The plan breaks down into four main goals, according to Davis, including Future & World Ready, Partner for Impact, Bring the Best to Nebraska and Strong Foundation. 

Future & World Ready consists of expanding global learning and making education abroad programming more affordable. With that, the goal is to incorporate more international themes throughout coursework to help students prepare for today’s world, according to Global Nebraska

“One of the first goals that we identified was being Future and World Ready. There are a number of key pieces that we think will directly benefit students,” Davis said. “We want to broaden the definition of global experience and bring more opportunities for global experiences.”

The Partner for Impact goal aims to transform research and expand international activity, according to Davis. He said that this goal will help strengthen global networks. 

Bring the Best to Nebraska aims to create new pathways for students and expand programming and support for international students, according to Global Nebraska. Within this goal, continuing to support international staff as well as building ties with international alumni are key factors. 

Davis said the hope for Strong Foundation includes establishing a global affairs hub that will improve campus coordination and provide collaboration across campus. 

Since last year, the American Council on Education’s Internationalization Laboratory worked together with the four co-chairs of the committee to create the strategy, according to Davis. 

“This was a high priority of mine,” Davis said. “We felt we needed to go further and spell out exactly how we wanted to accomplish this plan in a meaningful way.” 

There are four global affairs units that will help the plan run smoothly, according to Global Nebraska. The Office of Global Strategies, the Education Abroad Office, the International Student and Scholar Office and Programs in English as a Second Language all work together to expand global engagement. 

Forward Together aligns with the N2025 Strategic Plan and will be implemented over the remaining five years of that plan, according to Global Nebraska.

“I am really proud,” Davis said. “As an institution, we have come out in this moment and said that not only does global still matter, but we are more committed to it now than ever as an institution.”