US: new partners, business model for Bridge
The company will establish a pathway centre on the campus of Concordia University, St. Paul, an auxiliary campus on Metropolitan State University of Denver and a network partnership with Capital University in Columbus, Ohio.
The new additions bring Bridge’s university partnership portfolio total to eight.
The deal with Concordia University resembles Bridge’s traditional ESL pathways that prepare international students for a university’s degree programmes. The centre at Concordia will begin enrolling students in September 2017.
Capital University in Columbus will extend its international student recruitment through Bridge’s agent network
The auxiliary campus with Metropolitan State University of Denver is an extension of the group’s Bridge Language Center in downtown Denver. International students will be allowed to obtain conditional admission to the university and a TOEFL and IELTS waiver upon successful completion.
The network partnership, meanwhile, is a new model introduced by the group that sees its global agency network and international student recruitment services made available to universities that already have an established Intensive English Program.
Capital University in Columbus will extend its international student recruitment through Bridge’s agent network. It will target students seeking full or conditional admission and any students requiring ESL preparation will enrol at the university’s on-campus IEP.
“Capital University is an excellent addition to our growing higher education portfolio,” said Lisa Rooney, vice president for Institutional Relations at Bridge, in a statement.
“Located in one of the largest metropolitan hubs for international students in the US, the university prides itself on providing a very personalised educational experience for all students, which is in alignment with Bridge’s own educational philosophy.”
The pathway sector in the US is awaiting immigration guidance for pathway providers from the Student and Exchange Visitor Program. However in July, the agency released long-awaited guidance on English proficiency and conditional admissions.
It confirmed that universities are not allowed to issue certificates of eligibility for visas to students who do not meet their admissions requirements as stipulated on the F-17 form they submit to the US State Department.
Until guidance is released for the pathway sector, concerns remain that bridge and pathway providers may have to adjust practices on how they structure their programmes in order to comply with policy.