Internationalization strategies of IBF & IBI
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Internationalization strategies of IBF & IBI

 

The Private Higher Education Institution - Higher Professional School Integrated Business Faculty - Skopje (IBF) was established in 2005, while the Private Business Integrated Business Institute (IBI) was established in 2011.

The model of study is based on the Integrated Business Curriculum (IBC), modeled on a program implemented at the University of Idaho, USA, and has proven successful in preparing graduates to create value for their employer firm since the first day of their employment. IBF and the IBI function as separate entities, but with ongoing mutual coordination, cooperation and support, in order to offer the highest possible quality of first and second cycle studies in the Republic of Northern Macedonia, as testified by:

- the high employment rate (80%) of our graduates,

- High grades on the knowledge and responsibility of our students by the companies where they did their internship.

In order to offer top academic excellence,  IBF & IBI implement strategies for internationalizing their studies and program, some of which are detailed in this text.Starting in 2015, the IBF is the coordinator of the COOL (Collaborative Online Learning) project, featuring renowned universities such as Plattsburgh State University of New York (SUNY) and the University of Ljubljana - Faculty of Administration. The purpose of this project is to give students a sense of what it is like to work in an international environment that is characterized by different time zones, organizational cultures and many other factors. The end result of the COOL project is a large number of tailor made marketing campaigns that would be conducted in the United States, Slovenia and Macedonia in parallel for identical products and services. Virtual conferences also include representatives from the business community to mentor and support students.



Additionally, IBF and IBI students have the opportunity for Erasmus + mobility at renowned foreign institutions, such as University of Modena (Italy), University of Ljubljana (Slovenia), University of Economics and Culture (Latvia), Vilnius University (Lithuania), Wroclaw University (Poland), Global Oporto University (Portugal) and many others with which the IBF and IBI have inter-institutional agreements.

Erasmus + mobility is an essential part of the study, with many students from the IBF and IBI utilizing both student mobility for study and student mobility for practice. As a result, IBF has been awarded the Best Erasmus + Program in 2015.The internationalization strategies of the studies and program also imply continuous upgrading of the academic staff of the IBF and IBI by attending international conferences, as well as publication of papers in international journals. On the other hand, in order to upgrade the subject curriculum, the IBF and IBI organize guest lectures by foreign professors - professors from Poland, Slovenia, Lithuania, Germany and other countries have lectured in the last semester of institutions.

 


In order to expand the scope of international cooperation, in April 2019, the IBF and IBI organized the first International Erasmus + Week. The event lasted 5 days, with 34 participants from 20 universities from 7 different European countries (Germany, Lithuania, Poland, Turkey, Romania, Croatia and the Republic of Northern Macedonia). The event was successfully organized and institutions are already preparing to host the next International Erasmus + Week in May 2020.

The last aspect of the international strategies of the IBF and IBI are international projects. During the last four years, IBI has implemented two Erasmus + KA2 projects as coordinator.

 


• ISPEHE (Innovative Strategic Partnership for European Higher Education) in which partner institutions included University of Pavia, Italy; University of Ljubljana, Slovenia; Faculty of Economics & Culture, Latvia and Riga Technical University, Latvia. The project focused on creating an integrated and innovative approach to entrepreneurship education and establishing a link between higher education institutions and enterprises to develop practical learning guidelines through the development of an innovative Business Educational Platform (BEP) and Consolidated Career Center (CCC).
 
 
• SPIDE (Strategic Partnership for Innovation and Development of Entrepreneurship) in which partner institutions included University of Ljubljana, Slovenia; Faculty of Economics & Culture, Latvia and Kehl University of Applied Sciences, Germany. The main objective of this project was to increase the use of innovative approaches and practical knowledge, thereby enhancing the quality of educational programs of higher education institutions by enhancing thematic international cooperation in the field of entrepreneurship and management.
 
IBF & IBI continue to actively implement their internationalization strategies, with expansion and new collaborations planned with renowned institutions across Europe and across different continents.