Five reasons why Geneva is actually the perfect city for students

Geneva might not be the first city that springs to mind when you’re deciding where to take the next step in your educational journey. But for ambitious students pursuing an international career, few places are better.

Five reasons why Geneva is actually the perfect city for students
Photos: Deposit-photos (LL), Pexels (UL), International University in Geneva (R)

Located at the foothills of the white summits of the Jura Mountains, on the banks of Lake Leman, Geneva is a world-famous nexus of diplomacy, humanitarianism, and commerce at the heart of Europe. It’s precisely these reasons which also make it a great student city with rare opportunities for professional growth.

Presenting five reasons why Geneva is perfect for international students.

1. Great educational opportunities

Geneva's multicultural spirit and diverse student population – 25 percent are international students – is reflected in the academic focus of its educational institutions, particularly at the highly-regarded International University in Geneva

Kickstart your international career at the International University in Geneva

Listed in the UNESCO Handbook of Universities along with the likes of Cambridge, Oxford, and the Ivy League schools, International University in Geneva is particularly strong in the fields of International Relations, International Management, International Trade, Business Administration, and Digital Media. On the bachelor's level, the non-profit institution offers five competitive degrees in partnership with the University of Plymouth, along with six MA programmes and two PhD programmes, all taught in English.

Photo: International University in Geneva

Founded in 1997, the International University in Geneva has a close-knit alumni network spanning over 100 countries, and its graduates have gone on to assume top-positions at many of the leading global organisations such as the United Nations, UNICEF, and UNHCR. Students have also been recruited by prestigious enterprises and NGOs including Hewlett-Packard, Caterpillar, the Clinton Global Initiative, and the Global Fund.

2. Internships at international organizations

Geneva is home to more than 37 international organizations (with a total of 26,645 employees) including the World Trade Organization (WTO), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the International Labor Organization (ILO). What’s more, there are over 420 NGOs in the city, such as the Red Cross and UN Watch, and more than 179 foreign states have permanent missions there.

In keeping with the city itself, many of Geneva’s universities, like the International University in Geneva, have a pronounced international profile as well as individual career counselling and longstanding partnerships with many of the city’s global actors. For this reason, Geneva is a hive of exchange where students can embed themselves in the world of global diplomacy and international relations through unparalleled internship opportunities and international conferences.

3. A city of diversity and distinction

Students with an international mindset will be pleased that Geneva is home to far more than watchmakers, Alpskiers, and the Jet d'Eau, the world’s tallest water fountain. In fact, the bilingual city – you can get by with both French and English – has 150 nationalities represented (40 percent of the total population are foreigners), making it one of Europe’s most diverse cities.

Famously the Capital of Peace and Diplomacy (the predecessor to the United Nations was founded here in 1920), the relatively small city, owing to its cosmopolitan and humanitarian tradition, is also a town of scientific edge: here you find the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), a world-leader in subnuclear physics research where the World Wide Web was invented, and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO).

Click here to browse programmes at the International University in Geneva

4. Cultural flair and force

Besides being a congress city and a host of trade fairs and exhibitions such as the Geneva Motor Show and the World Economic Forum, Geneva is also a centre for culture and history. In the past, the city – which has a present population of half a million people – has been the birthplace and playground of giants like Voltaire, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Jean Calvin, and Kofi Annan.

Carouge. Photo: Creative Commons

If you are looking to learn outside of the classroom, you’ll find more than thirty theatres and museums, including the League of Nations Museum and the International Museum of the Red Cross and Red Crescent. International artists also perform regularly at the Grand Théâtre and Geneva Opera House. For those more interested in contemporary art and culture, there is the Bohemian borough of Carouge, an artsy neighbourhood modelled after French Nice where artisan shops and studios sit alongside buzzy jazz clubs.

Universities such as International University in Geneva also facilitate a vibrant and diverse student life through extracurricular activities such as college athletics, Model United Nations (MUN), and high-profile company visits.






A post shared by International Uni Geneva (@internationaluniversitygeneva) on Apr 24, 2019 at 1:13pm PDT

5. Roam and respite in the Alps or afar

Geneva is one of the greenest cities in Europe. With its lush waterfront parks and lakeside promenades, lakeshore gourmet restaurants, high-end shopping quarters, and quaint medieval Old Town, Geneva has something for every kind of student. Those living in the city also have the luxury of being a stone’s throw away from the Alpine peaks, which offer many exotic recreational opportunities for hiking, biking, skiing, glacier trekking, and rock climbing.

Photo: Depositphotos

Situated strategically on the European continent, Geneva borders the eastern fringes of France, and Switzerland’s high-speed railway system, (the trains à grande vitesse) offers easy access to all the surrounding Germanic and Mediterranean countries (there’s a three-hour connection with Paris and Milan) – as well as to the charming mountain cities of Montreux, Chamonix, and Lausanne.

This article was produced by The Local Creative Studio in partnership with International University in Geneva.

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Inquiry calls for free after-school care for 6-9 year-olds in Sweden

Children between ages 6-9 years should be allowed admittance to after-school recreation centers free of charge, according to a report submitted to Sweden’s Minister of Education Lotta Edholm (L).

Inquiry calls for free after-school care for 6-9 year-olds in Sweden

“If this reform is implemented, after-school recreation centers will be accessible to the children who may have the greatest need for the activities,” said Kerstin Andersson, who was appointed to lead a government inquiry into expanding access to after-school recreation by the former Social Democrat government. 

More than half a million primary- and middle-school-aged children spend a large part of their school days and holidays in after-school centres.

But the right to after-school care is not freely available to all children. In most municipalities, it is conditional on the parent’s occupational status of working or studying. Thus, attendance varies and is significantly lower in areas where unemployment is high and family finances weak.

In this context, the previous government formally began to inquire into expanding rights to leisure. The report was recently handed over to Sweden’s education minister, Lotta Edholm, on Monday.

Andersson proposed that after-school activities should be made available free of charge to all children between the ages of six and nine in the same way that preschool has been for children between the ages of three and five. This would mean that children whose parents are unemployed, on parental leave or long-term sick leave will no longer be excluded. 

“The biggest benefit is that after-school recreation centres will be made available to all children,” Andersson said. “Today, participation is highest in areas with very good conditions, while it is lower in sparsely populated areas and in areas with socio-economic challenges.” 

Enforcing this proposal could cause a need for about 10,200 more places in after-school centre, would cost the state just over half a billion kronor a year, and would require more adults to work in after-school centres. 

Andersson recommends recruiting staff more broadly, and not insisting that so many staff are specialised after-school activities teachers, or fritidspedagod

“The Education Act states that qualified teachers are responsible for teaching, but that other staff may participate,” Andersson said. “This is sometimes interpreted as meaning that other staff may be used, but preferably not’. We propose that recognition be given to so-called ‘other staff’, and that they should be given a clear role in the work.”

She suggested that people who have studied in the “children’s teaching and recreational programmes” at gymnasium level,  people who have studied recreational training, and social educators might be used. 

“People trained to work with children can contribute with many different skills. Right now, it might be an uncertain work situation for many who work for a few months while the employer is looking for qualified teachers”, Andersson said.