UNIVERSITY INTERFACE CENTRE: ESTABLISHMENT AND INTEGRATING SERVICES OF LIFELONG LEARNING CENTRE, CAREER CENTRE AND ALUMNI NETWORK AT THE UNIVERSITY
1 University of Novi Sad, Faculty of Economics (SERBIA)
2 University of Graz, Center for Continuing Education (AUSTRIA)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN13 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Conference name: 5th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 1-3 July, 2013
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:The Tempus project “Developing and setting up measures for initiating, enhancing and sustaining Higher-Education-Society Cooperation” (INTERFACE) has been under implementation from 2010 until 2013. The most important project objectives are: enhancing the employability of university graduates; ensuring lifelong learning and on-the-job-training for academics; fostering transfer and multiplication of academic knowledge to society; combating brain drain; and setting up a continuous learning and quality improvement system for universities.
The identified objectives differ through three key steps: (1) developing the necessary structures and capacities at the University level that would serve as a foundation for enhancing relationships and transfer of knowledge between the university and its environment; (2) establishing a University Interface Centre, defining its strategy and business plan. The Interface Centre will be the main responsible body at the University with regard to the universities’ relations with graduate students, with alumni, with enterprises, and with society at large, dealing with career counselling, lifelong learning and alumni activities; and (3) implementing the Interface Centre’s pilot projects.
A well as analysing good practice examples from the EU universities, this article presents the results of the conducted analysis of already existing activities related to the domain of this project at the University of Novi Sad. Moreover, the strategy elements of the University Interface Centre are presented, together with the implementation and development action plan, including, among others, the necessary resources, the organization design and the legal aspects of management and governance. The authors present in detail the primary objectives, tasks and functions of the organized Interface Centre and its integrated parts: the Centre for Lifelong Learning, the Centre for Career Development and Student Counselling, and the Alumni Club. Identification of the Interface Centre’s information requirements is the authors’ specific contribution to the realisation of the institutional framework and functioning of the Higher Education – Society Cooperation.
Keywords: Interface centre, lifelong learning, career development, alumni network.