Higher Education International Partnership for Prosperity: A Sustainable Collaboration between the U.S. and Costa Rica

Dr. Lorrie Clemo & Efstathios Kefallonitis
Year of Publication: 

We describe an innovative collaboration among higher education, government, and employers that offers a model for building skills and promoting innovative economy across international borders. With strong forces impacting higher education and the economy, we actively built an education abroad partnership that is both relevant and leading for the 21st century. The SUNY Oswego-Costa Rican Business Program brought together leaders from higher education, government and the business community to improve student skills and to increase the participating countries competitiveness. Built upon our sector strengths, the student mobility project included a three-part strategic vision for higher education, business and government that has potential to be scaled for greater impact: 1. Align academic offerings with workforce needs where businesses take a direct role in helping train students through course activities. 2. Foster an ecosystem of global competency where businesses and government partner with higher education to co-create an innovation agenda. 3. Form synergies to optimize intellectual assets and leverage economic development strategy to reach new levels of prosperity. These three efforts have a single unifying theme: prosperity through collaboration.