Internationalization at Home

friends erasmus

Furthering International Relations Capacities and Intercultural Engagement to Nurture Campus Diversity and to Support Internationalisation at Home


The FRIENDS Project

The FRIENDS project is built around the concept of Internationalisation at Home (IaH) that reframes the traditional perceptions of higher education internationalisation in the five Partner Countries involved in the project, namely Bhutan, Cambodia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand.

FRIENDS Partner Universities

friends partner
Varna University of Management (Bulgaria)
friends partner
Silesian University of Technology (Poland)
friends partner
Metropolitan University (Hungary)
friends partner
Istanbul Aydin University (Turkey)
Royal Institute of Managment
Royal Institute of Management (Bhutan)
Royal Thimphu College (Bhutan)
friends project partner
Svay Rieng University (Cambodia)
friends project partner
Dewey International University (Cambodia)
friends partner
Asia Pacific University of Technology & Innovation (Malaysia)
friends partner
Berjaya University College (Malaysia)
friends partner
University of Cebu (Pilippines)
friends partner
Cebu Technological University (Philippines)
friends partner
Saint Louis University (Pilippines)
friends project partner
Prince of Songkla University (Thailand)
payap csi icon
Payap University (Thailand)
friends partner
Mahasarakham University (Thailand)

Project Overview

The FRIENDS project aims to create a paradigm shift at the 12 Asian Partner Country Higher Education Institutions involved and introduces an egalitarian community spirit where internationalisation is not a privilege of the few any more but an asset all students can benefit from.

Definition of Internationalisation at Home (IaH)

“The purposeful integration of international and intercultural dimensions into the formal and informal curriculum for all students within domestic learning environments”  (Beelen & Jones, 2015)

Project Objectives

  1. To outline PC HEIs’ internationalisation landscapes and to iden-tify levels of integration of international and intercultural di-mensions into PC HEIs’ formal and informal curriculum.
  2. To improve PC HEIs’ capabilities for internationalisation through staff trainings and by translating general awareness of the IaH concept into streamlined IaH Action Plans.
  3. To build students’ intercultural knowledge and sensitivity to cultural diversity through the introduction of intercultural Pass-port virtual module into PC HEIs’ elective formal curriculum.
  4. To transform PC HEIs’ International Relations Offices (IROs) into vibrant multicultural focal points through the establishment of FRIENDS Teahouses and the induction of Home away from Home Programme for integrated international student care.
  5. To promote virtual mobility and campus diversity across the 5 PCs as key tools for students’ global competence development.

Project Beneficiaries

  • Students across campus who will benefit first hand from the Intercultural Passport virtual module and the FRIENDS Teahouse space.
  • University International Relation Offices’ staff, faculty and senior management who will improve their practical knowledge on laH, as well as their overall intercultural awareness.
  • Students of peer HEIs outside the consortium in the five partner countries.
  • Employers and HEIs business partners, local communities and minorities.

Project Output

  • Institutional IaH Action Plans adopted to streamline PC HEIs’ initiatives for IaH and to improve PC HEIs IROs staff and faculty’s capacities for internationalisation
  • Intercultural Passport virtual module designed and embedded into PC HEIs’ elective curriculum to build students intercultural knowledge and sensitivity to cultural diversity
  • FRIENDS Teahouses social spaces established at the 12 PC HEIs to function as student friendly multicultural hubs that welcome diversity and support the welfare of students with diverse cultural backgrounds
  • Home away from Home Programme induced as a mode for integrated international student care and services at the 12 PC HEIs involved

Project Information

Erasmus+ Programme for Capacity Building in Higher Education

Project number: 598652-EPP-1-2018-1-BG-EPPKA2-CBHE-JP

Coordinator: Varna University of Management (Bulgaria)

Project Duration: 36 months – 15th October 2018–14th October 2021

Project Activities

friends project poster
friends project filmfest
friends teahouse poster