the logo

Making international connections studying in Geneva

Ashley C. Pilipiszyn says that studying at the University of Geneva, the fifth most international university in the world, gave her life-changing opportunities to connect with influential people and students from around the world

  • Careers
  • Student life
  • Study abroad
Ashley Pilipiszyn's avatar

Ashley Pilipiszyn

January 13 2016
Flags at the United Nations, Geneva


View the 200 most international universities in the world 2016

Ashley C. Pilipiszyn writes about moving from the US to Geneva to further her career opportunities in international policy:

I am originally from Chicago and was living in Boston prior to moving to Geneva. I currently am completing a master’s degree in international relations and political science with a specific research focus on environmental security, energy diplomacy and policy entrepreneurship within global cities. In continuation of my studies, I intend to start a joint PhD within the Institute of Environmental Sciences at the University of Geneva in the autumn.

My experience as an international student in Geneva has been extremely positive, both within the classroom and within Geneva’s rich policy ecosystem. The city of Geneva and its university offer a wide array of opportunities for young professionals to network, collaborate and gain quality exposure to key players in a global setting, such as with the World Economic Forum, the United Nations and private corporations. The greatest challenge has been to decide between which events and talks to attend as the city offers multiple world-class events.

register- wide
Join the THE Student community and unlock free benefits

The transition from Chicago and Boston was not a difficult task. In the classroom, I am in a multicultural surrounding, connecting with students from different backgrounds, which enhances the overall academic experience. In terms of what makes my experience such a positive one, it has been the interdisciplinary nature of the programmes that cater to a variety of academic backgrounds, and how the university strives to bridge the domains of science, policy and technology.

I chose the University of Geneva because it is a global university situated geographically within the centre of Europe that has strong partnerships with other renowned universities and international organisations. This allows for a sharing of best practices and ideas that enrich one’s intellectual inquiry. I have had the opportunity to travel to and study in neighbouring countries, as well as more distant regions, such as the Middle East. I had the opportunity to serve as the teaching assistant of a studio (Urban Futures)  in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, San Francisco and Los Angeles. This course enabled me to participate in a case-based workshop that allowed me to connect with decision-makers, policy leaders, corporate executives and academic experts in order to develop a holistic view on the challenges and opportunities that global cities face. Being in Geneva, I was able to connect these local challenges to global decision-making and priority-setting across global agendas such as COP21 and the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals. Indeed, Geneva has played a pivotal role in establishing the framework, identifying the challenges and offering policy solutions.

The University of Geneva to anyone who wants true international exposure at the highest level. 

The University of Geneva is fifth in the ranking of the world’s most international universities.

You may also like

International outlook

World’s most international universities: the student experience

The world’s most international universities have been revealed – but what impact does an international environment have on students?

Carly Minsky

January 13 2016
sticky sign up

Register free and enjoy extra benefits