Welcome to the new ARES and IHECSolidaire interns
For several years, IHECS has offered two programmes open to foreign students. One, the ARES programme, has been active since the second semester of the 2017/2018 academic year, while the IHECSolidaire programme is celebrating its 5th year.
The ARES programme
This year, IHECS welcomes 17 professionals and young graduates from 6 partner countries involved in development cooperation. Each of these interns is affiliated to an institution with which our establishment has links. There are representatives from Burkina Faso, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Madagascar, Senegal, Morocco and Vietnam. These interns will be with us for 3 to 5 months. They include communication and journalism professionals and experts, but also recent graduates. The objective of the ARES programme is to allow our interns to enhance their skills and deepen their knowledge in communication and journalism by selecting one of the four programmes offered by IHECS:
- Citizen and institutional journalism
- Public relations and commercial journalism
- Communication for development and media literacy
- Cultural management and project management
Since these interns include students as well as experts in their field, we want to integrate them into the activities planned by the various departments (supervision of media memory, intervention in certain courses, participation in projects, student assistance, etc.), but also within the IHECS media (Fluid and Mammouth Media).
The IHECS international office will be responsible for the interns during their stay. It will ensure that all procedures prior to and following their arrival at our institution go smoothly. Students can count on a scholarship granted by ARES that will allow them to meet their daily needs.
The week preceding the resumption of classes was intense. Alisson Pechon, development cooperation project manager within the International Exchanges Office organised an integration week to allow the interns to get their bearings. This week was punctuated by various activities: an overview presentation of higher education in Belgium, a presentation by and visit to IHECS, a visit to Brussels and the Parliamentarium (the visitors’ centre of the European Parliament), and an opportunity to meet the heads of each IHECS department. In addition, they were able to tour certain specific districts of Brussels with guides offering an intercultural angle, followed by a cooperative workshop and a discussion on culture shock. This week, students taking the "Public Relations and Marketing Communication" programme had the pleasure of being able to participate in a full-day business immersion.
The IHECSolidaire programme
This programme is aimed at involving refugees and asylum seekers already in Belgium. These students take IHECS courses as free students and are usually enrolled in an à la carte programme. Participating in the IHECSolidaire programme this year are around a dozen students from Iraq, Iran, Mexico, Colombia, Venezuela, Yemen, Palestine, Ukraine, etc. Their backgrounds are diverse : law, art, journalism, and so on, but they share something unfortunate in common – they have all had to leave their home country under duress.
The IHECSolidaire programme also aims to allow them to reintegrate into our society, but also to enable them to share their knowledge with our students and teachers.
They will stay with us for a semester and have the possibility of staying for one further semester.
A mix of cultures
These different programmes, all brought together within our institution, offer an interesting mix of cultures for everyone. We therefore wish to encourage a coming together between international students, Belgian students and teachers through events, debates, soirées and exhibitions.