New International Program; GIST overseas exchange program

삽화 = 이경민 기자
삽화 = 이경민 기자

GIST and the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) have been carrying out undergraduate exchange programs from 2011 to 2021. However, GIST failed to extend the Caltech undergraduate exchange program. Instead, a research internship support program was established, and the existing overseas exchange system was strengthened. The overseas research internship will be an opportunity to develop additional research capabilities and passion with the support of the school in conducting research internships abroad.


End of the GIST-Caltech undergraduate program

The GIST and Caltech undergraduate programs began in 2011 with the exchange of two GIST undergraduates to SURF, Caltech’s summer research program. Since then, a memorandum of understanding was signed in 2012, and the comprehensive exchange and cooperation between the two universities commenced.

Since 2011, GIST and Caltech have carried out several programs such as SURF, SAP, and seasonal programs where professors from Caltech were invited to teach at GIST for a semester. GIST has insisted on extending the student exchange program with Caltech. The direction of progress was positive until October 2021. However, the 2022 student exchange program ended when Caltech’s management was replaced.


A new international relationship program

The GIST Section of international relations has been looking for alternatives to student exchange programs with Caltech. The existing exchange process was revised from a method of intensively supporting a small number of people to increasing the number of selected students and diversifying the schools subject to dispatch. In addition, a new international exchange program, an overseas research internship support program, was newly established.

The new overseas research internship support program allows students to select institutions autonomously. Previously, only Caltech based on MOU was eligible for support. In contrast, overseas research internship support programs can now be applied to various schools and institutions, such as overseas institutions, research labs, and universities.

The GIST Section of international relations said it needed help determining the support system and size of the international program. Still, it will strengthen the system by maintaining its stance on diversified overseas dispatch. Section of international relations emphasized that, unlike other support programs, it is easy to pay subsidies even if there is external support.


Support methods and requirements

The newly established overseas internship program consists of two types. The first is an application method where only students who have applied for their research training programs (internships) operated by overseas research institutes or universities are selected. For instance, this includes the internship program at the Max Planck Institute in Germany and the Caltech SURF program. The second is a method in which students individually contact overseas institutions or laboratories to apply for research training, conduct the research with approval, and submit a result report to receive subsidies.

The overseas internship program is for GIST students who have been approved for research activities (received an approval notice) for internship activities and must meet the deadline (based on 6 to 10 weeks, separate screening for non-standard periods) and be enrolled at the start of the internship.

As it is a new program established this year, the application period is optional, but it plans to proceed with the application of students about once a semester. In addition, the number of applicants for the program is around 15, and if the number of applicants and approvals within the year exceeds the budget, the support may be closed early.


Significance of the program

The overseas internship program was created to provide various forms of overseas experience, not just for exchange programs for credits. The program aims to support practical research participation at the undergraduate level through overseas internships.

Previously, students had to find various research opportunities independently and proceed with the program alone. The international program will provide more opportunities for students who are passionate about research internships and opportunities for students who have yet to think about research to develop their research skills and passion.


Precaution of the program

Among the global talent development programs conducted by GIST, the Study Abroad Program (SAP), the regular semester Mobility Program, and the summer session program exclude duplicate benefits when selecting participants. However, the overseas internship program can receive additional support from the school after applying again, even when applying to new institutions and universities after completing the internship period. However, it is impossible to extend research at the same institution or the same institution with duplicate support during the same period.

In addition, applicants for the GIST overseas exchange program should immediately inform local officials and schools, including leaders, as soon as problems occurs, such as the schedule of the program and group entry and exit. Participants should be aware of and be careful about the program’s selection. Details of overseas exchange programs, including overseas internship programs, can be found on the GIST IPA website.