Eve’s Experience with the International University for Intercultural Leadership

Monday 27 May 2024

As part of our summer opportunities, the Global Office offers one place at the International University for Intercultural Leadership (IUIL). Project Aladdin and BAU’s International University for Intercultural Leadership was launched in 2013 under the patronage of UNESCO. More than 80 prestigious universities from across the globe gather for this enriching experience in partnership with Bahçeşehir University. We reached out to last year’s St Andrews student, Eve, to reflect on her time in Turkey and within the IUIL. Eve studies Arabic and Spanish, and quickly found her place:

“Since the programme was aimed at International Relations students, I thought I would feel out of my depth with just my first year IR modules. However, there were students from all kinds of academic backgrounds and actually it was my extra curricular activities and experience related to the year’s theme that best equipped me to take part.

“This was an amazing experience which I would highly recommend. The opportunity to have lectures from experts in their respective fields, take part in UNESCO workshops, meet and network with students from around the world was a once in a lifetime experience. One of the people running the course was actually an ex-student of the programme and there was a real sense that they are keen to maintain a relationship with their alumni which I think will bring more excellent opportunities. You really felt like you were representing not only Scotland but the UK and people were very interested to hear about our university.

‘The most challenging thing about the experience was the intensity of the programme. We studied Monday-Friday from 9AM-6PM either in lectures, workshops or doing research. You are expected to deliver a research proposal with your group at the end of the programme and you should keep working on this paper until the end of October. You have to be sure that you can manage this project on top of your normal work load. It requires you to be very dedicated and organised. However, I wouldn’t let this put off future students from applying. The staff at Project Aladdin were very accommodating and flexible.

“My biggest piece of advice would be to go into the programme knowing you deserve to be there. There were lots of Masters and PhD students there and I was actually the youngest student on the programme so I was worried about not having enough academic experience to take part. Yet, once I stopped viewing it as a test of knowledge and more an opportunity to learn, it allowed me to fully benefit from the programme and this confidence also helped me realise that I had things to offer too.”

This year’s theme is ‘Inclusive Sustainability: Building climate resilience and promoting women empowerment and social justice’. The programme will begin in Istanbul, then move to Giresun, Turkey. The initiative consists of lectures, workshops, site visits, and social and cultural activities. Students will carry out a research project, which will be completed after the programme and submitted to an international panel of academics in October 2024. This opportunity is open to:

  • Undergraduates who will be studying Honours level modules in 2024-2025.
  • Postgraduate taught students who will be registered throughout July 2024.
  • Students who will not be taking exams in August 2024.

Applications for this year’s place at International University for Intercultural Leadership are due at 0900 on Monday 3 June 2024. You must complete the IUIL Application Form, and, if selected, provide a cover letter and CV by Friday 7 June 2024. Please be aware that the final approval of selected students rests with the Project Aladdin team. For this reason, the University cannot guarantee that students will be accepted by the event organisers, even if you are selected for the programme by the University. For more information on IUIL and the opportunity to get involved, see our summer opportunities page or take a look at the IUIL Brochure for 2024.

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